#NCSEN: Rasmussen, Rove conspiring to create illusion of Tillis momentum?

roveRasmussen Reports — a polling firm with close ties to Karl Rove and the Bush political organization — has released their “latest” polling on the North Carolina US Senate race.  It purports to show Republican Thom Tillis at 45 percent, Kay Hagan at 40 percent, 6 percent for “Other” and 9 percent “Undecided.”  The date on their blog posting is for TODAY, but if you go to the article and click on the link for the survey questions — THOSE are dated MAY.  At this point, a poll conducted in May is meaningless. 

A survey by Rasmussen in JANUARY  showed Tillis beating Hagan 47-40.  (The GOP primary was in May.)  In May, Rasmussen had Tillis up 45-44 in a head-to-head matchup.  No Libertarian candidate was figured in. 

A leftist blogger in Montana describes a similar scenario involving Rove and Rasmussen in that state’s 2012 US Senate race:

Insiders tell me that Congressman Dennis Rehberg enjoyed breakfast last month with the folks behind Rasmussen Reports, George Bush’s former polling operation often criticized for making “educated guesses.”

Rasmussen Reports is not Rehberg’s campaign polling firm.  So why would he spend precious campaign time meeting with a polling firm that isn’t his own?  Good question.

This week, a rival polling firm called Public Policy Polling released a poll showing Jon Tester with a five point lead over Dennis Rehberg.  The poll, which sampled  934 Montana voters over the course of three days, showed Rehberg with a dismal 39 percent approval rating.

Lo and behold, one day later, Rasmussen Reports announced it too had a poll hilariously showing Rehberg with a ten point lead.  Rasmussen’s poll only surveyed 450 voters on one day—May 2—the day after the Pubic Policy Poll was released. Again, Rasmussen Reports is known for exhibiting “a considerable bias toward Republican Candidates.”

This isn’t the first time rightwing polls showing Dennis Rehberg ahead have conveniently appeared in Montana’s Senate race.

  • On January 30, Karl Rove’s secret organization Crossroads released a poll showing Rehberg 11 points ahead of Tester.  The timing of the release was no coincidence: It gave a boost to Rehberg only hours before he announced pathetic 4th quarter fundraising numbers, where he pulled in half of what Tester raised.  Look closely and you’ll see that the Crossroads poll itself was actually conducted between January 9-10, a full three weeks before it was announced.
  • Another Rasmussen Poll showing Rehberg ahead was conveniently released just hours after Tester formally filed paperwork to become a Senate candidate on February 21.shenan

Am I saying that Rehberg and his rightwing pollster buddies might have a deal to cook the books every now and then to create a perception of momentum for Rehberg?  Why yes, I am.

By the way, the incumbent Democrat Tester beat Rove’s candidate Rehberg by FOUR in a race RealClear Politics was calling ”Likely Republican.”

The only polls I’ve seen showing Tillis ahead are these Rasmussen surveys, and one from Civitas right after the May primary.  Just two days ago, Civitas releases a poll showing Hagan leading Tillis by TWO. Tillis is also woefully behind Hagan in fundraising.  And the DC establishment appears to be concerned about the Tillis campaign.

  I call shenanigans.