Posted: 3:29 pm Friday, June 13th, 2014

National GOP nudges campaigns to drop pollster for Cantor (and Kingston and Deal) 

By Daniel Malloy

WASHINGTON — The Hill newspaper is out with an article this afternoon saying the National Republican Congressional Committee has urged U.S. House candidates not to use John McLaughlin, the pollster who whiffed on Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s re-election.

McLaughlin’s firm is also used by several big-name Georgia Republicans, including Gov. Nathan Deal and Senate hopeful Jack Kingston. From The Hill:

Sources close to the National Republican Congressional Committee hear that the House GOP’s campaign arm will encourage their candidates to reassess whether they should be using McLaughlin in several top races.

“It’s safe to say the candidates that currently have him on staff are going to be asking a lot of questions going forward,” said one national Republican strategist.

“Campaigns are going to make their own decisions. People will look and see and if John can make a case to the campaigns about why he got Virginia so wrong and can still get their race right,” said another.

McLaughlin’s client list seems to have shrunk after a rough 2012 season, but he continues to work on some key campaigns. …

No Republicans wanted to go on-record to criticize McLaughlin and add insult to injury. But many who’ve worked with him, including some who called him a friend, say they weren’t surprised his polling for Cantor was off, though they marveled at how wrong it was. His 2012 track record was perhaps the worst of any major pollster in a year where many in the GOP missed the mark.

“I don’t understand how he wasn’t run out of the business years ago,” said one GOP strategist who’s overlapped on a few races with McLaughlin. “Every pollster once in their career has gotten something wildly wrong. But this [Cantor poll] was really wild, and he very consistently gets it wildly wrong.”

Kingston, for one, is standing by McLaughlin.

“Our internal numbers were spot on,” campaign manager Chris Crawford said this week, “in the face of public polls even up to the day before the primary, which showed us in third.”

UPDATE: 6:30 p.m. Georgia GOP consultant Joel McElhannon weighs in in McLaughlin’s defense via email:

<blockquote>”I have worked with John McLaughlin on countless campaigns. He has 30+ years of hard earned experience that I trust.

This typical DC two-step of anonymous quotes from competitors and enemies with an axe to grind is silly and pathetic.

McLaughlin’s track record here in Georgia is truly impressive. It speaks for itself, and I will continue to rely on John’s expertise anytime I am in a tough campaign.”

23 comments
Wascatlady
Wascatlady

If he were a baseball player, or a college football coach, he would be outta there.

JaySly
JaySly

mclaughlin gets paid big money for polling and he said cantor would win 62-28%????  who dumb enough to keep paying that moron??

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

Raul Labrador of Idaho announced this afternoon he would run for the House Majority Leader job in the special leadership election next Thursday, June 19 against current third ranking member and favorite Kevin McCarthy of California.  Labrador is part of the Tea Party contingent in the House.  Next Thursday's vote is a secret ballot and some members could switch their allegiances since there are no committee assignments to be used as enticements for votes. 

RoadScholar
RoadScholar

The repubs "have to be told not to use McLaughlin"? Are you kidding me? They must be really stupid!

JAWJA
JAWJA

Nate Silver was just about the only pollster that got the 2012 election right.  Newt's buddy, Insider Advantage, was WAAAAYYYY off. 

NWGAL
NWGAL

Usually when someone is this woefully incompetent at his/her job, that person is fired or replaced. That, however, does not apply in the world of politics.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

This is 48 hours after the same thing was reported in dozens of magazines, newspapers, syndicated columns, and blogs.  The Political Insider was too busy trying to prop up Carter,  Nunn, and the dead Medicaid expansion issue in GA to cover this at the time.

The-Centrist
The-Centrist

LOL.

Case in point - Congressman Kingston.

philkent
philkent

@JAWJA  What are you smoking? Insider Advantage consistently polled that Perdue was leading and Kingston and Handel were tied for second place. l

philkent
philkent

@JAWJA  What are you smoking? Insider Advantage called the Senate GOP primary consistently correctly with Perdue first and Kingston and Handel tied for second place!

td1234
td1234

@JAWJA And was does Nate say about the races in Georgia this year?

DS
DS

@The_Centrist, the article that Daniel is telling us about was just published two hours ago. Sure, everyone knew McLaughlin blew the projection, and he gave his excuses a few days ago, but this article has new info about the repercussions. The other shoe has dropped.

I'm glad Daniel posted about it.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

This is a screen name stealing, liberal hypocrite sock puppet.  While it shows his/her lack of integrity and ethics, it also shows how far at least this one leftist will go with such "debate" tactics and those who won't condemn them.

Absolute scum.

The-Centrist
The-Centrist

You're like my puppy, td - you have a shiny new toy - Nate Silver in your case - and you're not going to give him up.

Just bear in mind that Nate's not a pollster - he reviews the polling of others and develops projections based on that - he doesn't do his own polling.

Yes Michelle and Jason will have uphill battles - but just because Nate projects Republican victories several months out, doesn't mean that it's carved in stone.

DS
DS

@The-Centrist @td1234, The-Centrist is correct, Nate Silver uses other polls, along with further statistical refinements, such as quality of past poll results, approval ratings and such.

Few other disclaimers: even Nate Silver himself doesn't wave poll analysis reports over his head and shout, "This just in!" He's very careful to warn readers not to make too much of numbers based upon small data sets or long range projections. I suggest you read his book, "The Signal and the Noise" for his explanation.

Also, most of the early political analysis on Mr. Siver's website, fivethirtyeight.com, is by Harry Enten, a statistician hired by Silver. Nate is writing commentary about sports, with some politics thrown in every now and then.

Finally, the analysis that Mr. Enten is publishing is of a more simplified form than the full blown Nate Silver model. The full model analysis with all the fine tuning will start coming out later this summer.

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

This is a screen name stealing, liberal hypocrite sock puppet.  While it shows his/her lack of integrity and ethics, it also shows how far at least this one leftist will go with such "debate" tactics and those who won't condemn them.

Scum.

honested
honested

@DS 

Do you think that accurate synopsis will modify the comprehension and behavior of a certain tiny dog?

The_Centrist
The_Centrist

This is a screen name stealing, liberal hypocrite sock puppet.  While it shows his/her lack of integrity and ethics, it also shows how far at least this one leftist will go with such "debate" tactics and those who won't condemn them.

Total scum.