By Jon Coupal | A few weeks ago this column addressed the issue of polling and how it can be manipulated and, even when it is not manipulated, how wrong it can be. Still, candidates, consultants and the media do a lot of polling to test the viability of whatever it is they support or oppose.
Sen. Josh Newman’s recall election was a bitter fight. While polling suggested he was in trouble, those supporting the recall were well aware that polls can be wrong. But even recall proponents were surprised that the recall would prevail by a 59-41 percent margin. That wasn’t just a loss for Newman. It was a trouncing.
This past week, in his political swan song, Newman vented against the recall effort on the floor of Senate. Incredibly, Newman stated, “I can’t imagine wanting to win so badly that I would ever do, in the pursuit of partisan advantage, what has been done here.” In light of how Democrats skewed the political process during the recall effort, Newman’s complaint is laughable. Let’s review.
Not once, but twice, Democrats jammed through new laws changing the recall process specifically for the purpose of throwing Newman a political lifeline. These were enacted as so-called “trailer bills,” last-minute, supposedly budget-related bills that are passed without any public hearings. These were designed to delay what otherwise would have been a special election for the recall last November or December, a ploy that succeeded in delaying the issue to June. Because the purpose of the 100-year-old right to recall is to get a rapid resolution of whether a politician should continue in office, the claim that the new laws were “improving” the process was ridiculous.
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