Push Poll by Measure 37 Opponents Flawed

The following is a press release from Measure 37 Claimants for Fairness. 2-13-07. www.M37Fairness.org

In an effort to advance their goal of repealing Measure 37, the chief opponent of the property rights measure, 1,000 Friends of Oregon, is touting a poll that at best is skewed and can more accurately be described as a political “push poll.” The group submitted their poll to the Joint Committee on Land Use Fairness last Thursday. Review of the polling questions reveals loaded language and apparent attempt to sway respondents’ opinions by withholding information that would provide a balanced perspective.

The poll uses loaded language in their first question as a way to influence responses to the second question. The first question includes phrases like “big development projects”, “hurt neighbors and the community”, “greedy grab by developers and timber companies,” and “voters were sold a bill of goods.” Only after introducing these loaded phrases to the respondent does the poll then ask whether they would support or oppose repeal.

“The structure is a classic push poll,” said Jim Zupancic, of Measure 37 Claimants for Fairness. “Introduce the loaded language before you ask their opinion.”

Finally, the poll as distributed to the Committee provides no specifics on the geography, party registration or demographics, such as gender and age, of the respondents. “You can’t evaluate the poll without knowing whether the respondents were a fair cross-section of Oregon voters,” Zupancic added.

“Legislators should be wary about basing perceptions on push polling,” Zupancic said. “They should base it on the fact that 61 percent of Oregonians voted for Measure 37 and that people who have filed claims deserve to have legislators respect their rights.”

Measure 37 Claimants for Fairness plays a unique role in the Measure 37 debate. The Association does not take a position on the merits of any specific claim, but will pursue its primary mission to support and defend the current law as passed by an overwhelming majority of Oregonians.

To learn more, please contact Jim Zupancic at 503.277.9906 and visit the Association’s website at www.M37Fairness.org. – 30 –