Poll Wars: Either Way, Blago Bites

St. Louis poll more favorable than Chicago survey, but still dreary

Did the last Tribune poll overstate the unpopularity of the governor?

"Gov. Rod Blagojevich's favorability rating may be sinking, but a new poll shows it ain't as bad as the Chicago Tribune reported," Michael Sneed of the Sun-Times writes today. "Although a recent Trib poll claims Blago's popularity has sunk to 13 percent, a new poll by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch pegs it at 32 percent."

Well, not exactly.

The Post-Dispatch poll indeed puts Blagojevich's approval ratings at 32 percent. But the Post-Dispatch said in its report about the poll that "The Research 2000 poll has historically ranked Blagojevich's favorability higher than most others. Pollster Del Ali speculated that may be in part because his poll asks respondents to choose among several categories of negative and positive approval, which may prompt more nuance in the answers."

In fact, even in the Post-Dispatch poll, the governor's ratings are at an all-time low.

Ali questioned the findings of other polls, presumably including the Tribune's, saying "I find it hard to believe a Democrat in a Democratic state would be less popular than George Bush."

But Ali overlooks the fact that Bush surely still has some stalwart supporters among the state's Republicans, while folks in both parties seem to hate the governor. After all, the stalemate in Springfield is between Democrats.

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