Monday, December 26, 2005

My Christmas Vacation

Am I reposting so many excerpts from Hiram Wurf just because I'm lazy?

No -- It's because his stuff is so damn good and I'm lazy.

In the Illinoize comments, Hiram questions the inferences Rich Miller drew from this poll.
I do have criticism of the first three points Rich makes about the poll. Here they are:

1st Point: "Just 28 percent of likely Democratic primary voters in her district knew who Christine Cegelis was. Remember, this is after her high-profile race against Hyde and a strong effort to keep her campaign going in the months since then. Cegelis has burned through a bunch of money in the past year to keep her name out there, but just over a quarter of Democratic primary voters recognized her name in August."

Christine's race was "high profile" after the 2004 general election vote - not before. There was one debate during the campaign to a restricted audience. Hyde refused to engage Christine during the 'race' limiting her media exposure. Christine had no money in the race (spending under $200,000).

Rich also writes "Cegelis has burned through a bunch of money in the past year to keep her name out there" - As of last reporting period it was about $100,000 spent since last election I think - add it to the $200,000 from the prior campaign and you still have a substantially underfunded candidate spending in the neighborhood of $300,000 for an election and a roughly one-year post-election effort.

2nd Point: "48 percent of those same likely Dem primary voters knew who Peter O'Malley was, even though he had never run for office before. O'Malley dropped out of the Democratic primary race a couple of months after the poll was taken (the poll was not conducted by or for O'Malley's campaign)."

O'Malley's a great name normally - you might even know one (I know one named Tim) - but I've never met a Cegelis that wasn't Christine. Having Pat O'Malley as a notable state politician who served ten years in the Senate and ran for governor in the 2002 Republican Primary makes for greater confusion in name recognition. Sure he was an out of district Republican and not a Democrat - but he also notably bucked his party from time to time - making him seem like an 'opposition' candidate. I'm not disparaging Peter O'Malley when I say that he wasn't able to run hard in the race (which is why he dropped out) - it defies belief that more people really knew Peter than Christine - even though Peter had run once, years before, for Dupage County Board. I'm not sure Peter even gathered petition signatures - and if he did I doubt it was many.

3rd Point: "Before he dropped out, the poll showed that O'Malley was leading Cegelis 26-19 (or 22-16 excluding "leaners") in the primary. Even with that high margin of error, a seven-point lead is still pretty solid - about an 86 percent probability that O'Malley was ahead and the result wasn't due to sampling error."

I've showed the error in point two. Put simply, since Peter wasn't running much, hadn't advertised much if at all (with what money?) and had significantly less overall press than Christine (given that she had run the election before), it's hard to imagine it could possibly be true.
Hiram's reflections are, of course, always Wurf While.

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