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Keller @ Large: Poll Talk In Tisei-Tierney Race

By Jon Keller, WBZ-TV
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Congressman John Tierney

Congressman John Tierney

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Veteran Boston political commentator Jon Keller is heard every weekday...
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BOSTON (CBS) – My longstanding policy has been to not take internal campaign polling seriously unless the campaign releases the entire poll for examination.

But now, the Sixth District congressional campaign of Richard Tisei (R-Wakefield) has done just that.

The survey of 400 likely voters conducted in early May by veteran GOP pollster John McLaughlin, which gave Tisei a seven-point lead over incumbent John Tierney, has been disparaged by some for allegedly oversampling Republicans, who make up 22% of the survey sample but only 11.3% of registered voters statewide.

The Tisei campaign argues that’s not such a distortion in the 6th CD, which is one of the more fertile areas in the state for the GOP, breaking big for the Charlie Baker/Tisei ticket in the 2010 governor’s race and going huge for Scott Brown in the January 2010 US Senate special.

Take it with a half-cup of salt, as you should do with any poll, but here are some of the survey’s more intriguing findings, limited to results where the gap is well into double-digits to help allow for any distortion:

* Only 32% believe the US is “going in the right direction; 61% say we’re “on the wrong track”;

* “Since Barack Obama became president, are you and your family better off today than you were four years ago?” Yes: 28%; No, 64% (!)

* Scott Brown’s very/somewhat favorable rating: 67%; very/somewhat unfavorable: 21%. Elizabeth Warren’s favorable/unfavorable: 36%/37%.

* “Would you vote to re-elect Tierney, or is it time to give someone else a chance?” Re-elect: 29%; someone else, 50%.

* “Are you aware or unaware of the legal problems facing John Tierney’s family regarding the illegal offshore gambling empire they ran in Antigua?” Aware: 72%; unaware: 26%

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