A recent poll for AD-69 was leaked around mid week and while it represents the first such polling in the hotly contested AD-69 race, we’re skeptical of the results. The poll from David Binder Research shows a dead heat between OC Clerk Recorder Tom Daly and Republican Robert Hammond. This is a district that is overwhelmingly Democratic and Latino which should raise red flags for anyone.
Before running the story, we’ve sought comment from Tom Daly’s campaign as well as the campaign of Julio Perez (Michele Martinez no longer speaks with any members of the press who have written anything unflattering about her despite her repeated claims she’ll talk to anyone, but we invite her campaign to comment below). We have not reached out to Francisco Barragan or Mr. Hammond for comment.
The Poll, conducted in mid-February, shows Daly and Hammond in a 25 percent tie. The memo releasing the results is light on details. Only 400 registered voters in the district were queried. There is no geographical breakdown of what percentage of voters are in Santa Ana or Anaheim. No statistics on age, gender, or ethnic origin. Its not clear if the poll was conducted in English, Spanish, or Vietnamese.
But its pretty obvious from the text that this memorandum is a push poll conducted for Tom Daly. From the note:
2010 AD 69 Primary Preference
Tom Daly (D) 25%
Michele Martinez (D) 13%
Julio Perez (D) 4%
Francisco Barragan (D) 5%
Robert Hammond (R) 25%
A survey conducted among voters in the new Assembly District 69, among those likely to participate in the June 2012 primary election, shows Orange County Clerk-Recorder Tom Daly with a significant lead over his Democratic competition.
In a simulated primary election race, Daly has a nearly 2 to 1 lead over his closest Democratic opponent. Only Robert Hammond, a Republican, has similar support. A Democrat will be favored to win the general election as the district has a nearly 2 to 1 Democratic registration advantage.
In the ballot test, Daly receives 25% of the vote, while Michele Martinez receives 13%, Julio Perez receives 4%, Francisco Barragan receives 5%, and Robert Hammond receives 25%.
Daly is the only Democratic candidate who receives notable support among all parties.
In a simulated race, Daly receives 30% of Democrats, 18% of Republicans and 30% of Independents. Martinez receives 21% of Democrats, 1% of Republicans and 17% of Independents while Perez receives 7% of Democrats, 3% of Independents and no Republican support.
And when voters hear more about the background, experience, qualifications and accomplishments of Daly, they react very positively. Daly’s initial positive sentiment of 35% moves to 80% after voters hear a short paragraph providing these basic facts.
As the campaign commences and voters begin to focus on the candidates for State Assembly, this survey shows that Daly, with his experience as the Orange County Clerk-Recorder and as former Mayor of Anaheim, is in a strong position to win this contest.
We called the research company today and we haven’t heard from anyone by the 1 PM deadline we extended them. The Daly camp has had more than 48 hours to respond and we haven’t heard from them. The poll seems to evangelize Daly’s candidacy but did they ask the same sort of questions about Hammond who scored the same percentage as Daly? What about hyping a Martinez, Perez, Barragan pro-Latino troika? Nothing about that either.
The bottom line — it’s an unscientific poll with a questionable sampling which is more tied to candidate name recognition than actual support. It’s been shopped around for a few days and published in the blogsphere without any critical analysis. The folks at David Binder Research ought to be embarrassed by this shoddy work and the Daly campaign ought to be embarrassed for paying for this poll.
A push poll isn’t the best indication of true support. It comes down to money, feet on the street, organization, and endorsements — none of which Hammond has even though he is essentially tied with Daly. My favorite measure of who’s the leading candidate is how they perform during debates. So far, there is no debate we’re aware of for these candidates and the ability to think on your feet, react to questions and express views with eloquence and clarity are clearly ways candidates are going to separate themselves from the pack. Having spoken personally before with everyone but Hammond, I have an idea which candidates will thrive and which ones will struggle during a debate.
As far as this February poll goes, the best thing I can say about it is that it’s the only poll out there. Just don’t read too much into the numbers without more context.
We welcome polls as they come in, but the more detail the better.