Earlier today, I had a post on the extremely biased (pro-Democrat and pro-statist, naturally) "news" article by Dan Eggen at the Washington Post about a WaPo-ABC News poll showing Americans of all political persuasions being against the recent Citizens United v. FEC ruling that pretty much trashed the 1st Amendment violation known as McCain-Feingold. In the post, there was nothing showing the questions that were asked; but, I guessed they would be misleading.
Turns out I was right.
Changing topics, do you support or oppose the recent ruling by the Supreme Court that says corporations and unions can spend as much money as they want to help political candidates win elections? Do you feel that way strongly or somewhat?
Would you support or oppose an effort by Congress to reinstate limits on corporate and union spending on election campaigns? Do you feel that way strongly or somewhat?
With all the populist anti-corporation rhetoric flying around from everywhere, including from some conservatives, it makes sense that most people would answer negatively. Sean Parnell at the Center for Competitive Politics has an excellent explanation on how misleading these questions were. CCP also highlights another poll from some group called Argus that showed 41% of people had never heard of the ruling, with another 27% saying they hadn't followed it closely. CCP also added this:
(In light of this data, it's hard to believe that only 2 percent of respondents in the Washington Post-ABC News poll had no opinion of the ruling).
Lawyer William McGinley suspects the polling results were driven by the phrasing of the questions. He follows up with questions that would have been more pertinent:
* Do you believe that the free speech guarantees of the First Amendment are a core American value?
* Do you believe that the government has the authority to ban books containing campaign speech as argued by the federal government before the Supreme Court in the Citizens United case? Should the federal government be permitted to impose criminal or civil penalties for simply engaging in political speech?
* Should the federal campaign finance laws be designed to silence critics of incumbent Members of Congress and the Administration? Do you believe that the ability to criticize the government and its actions is protected by the First Amendment?
* Did you know that an overwhelming number of corporations in the United States are small businesses? Did you know that most jobs are created by small businesses? In this jobless recession, should the business community be permitted to express its political views regarding the economic policies of the Administration and Members of Congress and the government officials who formulate the policies?
I have no doubt the results would be far different.
As expected, the lefties at HuffPo, the Democratic Strategist, Talking Points Memo, and TalkLeft are having a field day with this, touting it as a way for Democrats to regain some electoral momentum. Naturally, they are engaging in the demagoguery on this just as Teh Won did during his SOTU. But of course, we are talking about those who believe in the "Fairness of Speech" (that is, how leftists define fairness) in the "living" United States Constitution that doesn't actually exist, not the Freedom of Speech that is in the real United States Constitution.
(Hat tip: Memeorandum)