Do you consider yourself a traditional Democrat or more of a Bernie Sanders Democrat?
That was one of the many questions democratic voters and super voters in the suburbs and exurbs of the Lehigh Valley’s 7th Congressional District were asked in a push poll Monday night. The poll was conducted by Survey Sampling International and all of the polls misleading questions were directed at Greg Edwards and Susan Wild. John Morganelli, the other Democrat in the primary who has a more conservative track record, was only brought up three times asking if the voters had a favorable or unfavorable view of the former District Attorney or if they would vote for Morganelli if the primary was held today.
The person conducting the poll on behalf of SSI would not disclose which party or candidate paid for the poll, but SSI has a history of running conservative leaning push polls to try and muddy the waters in congressional races. In the 2013 special House election between former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford and Elizabeth Colbert, SSI conducted multiple push polls, and one, in particular, asked questions if Colbert had an abortion, did jail time or if unions contributed to her campaign.
Some of the questions from the push poll asked voters if they had “serious doubts, little doubts or no doubts” about Susan Wild or Greg Edwards after the pollster read leading questions about those candidates. The pollster asked voters about Greg Edwards being “the only candidates in America asked by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee to quit running for Congress.” Earlier this year, the DCCC was asking around to see if Edwards or Wild would leave the crowded primary and jump into a down-ballot state senate or house race. Another question was asked about Edwards comparing “Pennsylvania’s education funding system to South African apartheid,” and that “a group he directs often wears masks to school board meetings and disrupts them?” Greg Edwards’ campaign spokesman Daniel Friedman said in a statement, “frankly it’s sad when someone’s record is so shameful that they only way they can attempt to win is by slandering their opponents.”
The questions going after Susan Wild included her ties to Allentown city government, her refusal to condemn former Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski, her statements on Americans celebrating the death of Saddam Hussein and her support for a health care plan that would cost “$52 trillion and features $6.6 trillion in tax increases, meaning higher taxes for middle and lower income Americans?” Susan Wild’s campaign spokesperson, Grigsby Crawford, said that “This is the first we’ve learned of [the poll], but I’m not surprised there have been push polls targeting us, as it’s a lazy and decades-old tactic typically deployed against campaigns with strong momentum. Fortunately, in modern campaigns, research shows push polls to be wildly ineffective and a significant waste of money. So if our opponents want to continue to spend their resources this way, they can have at it. We’ll continue communicating with the voters in the 7th through far more productive, and genuine means.”
Here is a transcript of the push poll:
I would like to ask your impressions of some people who are active in public life. After you hear each one, please tell me your opinion of the person is very favorable, somewhat favorable, somewhat unfavorable or very unfavorable. If you have never heard of that person or you do not have information of an opinion, you can tell me that too.
Susan Wild, very favorable, somewhat favorable, somewhat unfavorable or very unfavorable?
Donald Trump, very favorable, somewhat favorable, somewhat unfavorable or very unfavorable?
If the 2018 Democratic Primary for US Congress were being held today, who would you vote for? John Morganelli, Susan Wild or Greg Edwards?
Next I am going to read you some short statements about one of the candidates. After I read each statement, please tell me if you find very serious doubts, minor doubts or no real doubts about voting for that candidate.
Susan Wild support in government healthcare plan that experts project to cost taxpayers as much as $52 trillion and features $6.6 trillion in tax increases, meaning higher taxes for middle and lower income Americans? Serious doubts, some doubts, no doubts?
Greg Edwards is one of the only candidates in America asked by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee to quit running for congress? Serious doubts, some doubts, no doubts?
As a former Allentown solicitor, Susan Wild was tied up in the corruption scandal involving Mayor Ed Pawlowski, she still has not openly condemned the former mayor or his elaborate pay to play schemes?
Greg Edwards has compared Pennsylvania’s education funding system to South African apartheid, a group he directs often wears masks to school board meetings and disrupts them?
Greg Edwards would like to expand the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to include sexual orientation and gender identity, meaning that business owners would have to provide services like a same sex wedding cake even if they have strong religious or ethical objections?
While Greg Edwards was a president of a local charity, he paid his family members tens of thousands of dollars a year, amounting fifteen percent of the charity’s revenue. In 2015 the charity ended the year in the red, meanwhile Greg Edwards was paying his family members more than $50,000?
In 2003, Susan Wild compared Americans celebrating the death of Saddam Hussein to Islamic extremist who celebrated September 11th?
Susan Wild thinks that standing up to women’s issues is one of the core principles of her campaign, but before she was a politician, Susan Wild was a lawyer in 2015 defended a businessman from a woman’s accusations of sexual harassment and discrimination?
Greg Edwards has never been elected to office and lack any government experience?
Sometimes over the course of a survey people change their minds. If the 2018 Democratic Primary for US Congress was being held today, who would you vote for? John Morganelli, Susan Wild or Greg Edwards?
Finally, which political party do you identify with?
Do you consider yourself a traditional democrat or more of a Bernie Sanders Democrat?