Wednesday, February 16, 2005

U.S. News and World Report's Washington Whispers section is polling their readers through a web poll to gauge how they think Gov. Howard Dean's election as head of the Democratic National Committee will impact the Democratic Party. The option are a. t will expand and take back control of Congress and the White House, b. He'll drive moderate Democrats to the Republicans, and c. He'll turn the party into a launching pad for a 2008 presidential bid.

Currently, %69 of U.S. News readers believe he will drive moderates into the arms of the Republicans.

Right above the poll they also have a quote attributed to Dean that says, "I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for."

Now I don't want to say the poll is biased, it could have been a certain laziness in crafting the questions and layout, but it is hard to ignore the fact that it is weighted in a certain direction. In addition, dropping an inflammatory quote right above the poll is a sure sign of either bad methods or clear bias. Add that to the fact that the former editor of the news mag went to work for Bush as a speechwriter and I think we have good evidence for a bias.

I am not saying Dean may not do the things they predict. However, their own methods steer readers to negative conclusions about Dean. They are loading the poll.

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