We Await an Official Statement from the Hillary Clinton Campaign
It’s been four days since I wrote about my first-hand experience with a telephone “pollster” asking me several loaded questions about the two leading Democratic presidential candidates.
[READ MORE HERE: “I Just Got Push-Polled by Hillary Clinton’s Nevada Campaign”]
Much criticism has been leveled at me for the way I handled the telephone call. The “comments” section here at this website is loaded with dirty names and derogatory remarks. For the sake of peace and harmony, let’s just say that indeed — I am a jerk. Feel free to select your own favorite expletive.
But my likability factor (or lack thereof) and abrasive personality doesn’t alter some legitimate suspicion that the Hillary Clinton campaign may be engaging in the reprehensible practice of “push polling,” which are tactics clearly intended to slander Bernie Sanders, who is now surging in national polls and poses a serious threat to Sec. Clinton’s prospects of winning the Democratic nomination. My glaring lack of refinement aside, nothing alters the reality that last Friday evening — yes — I did receive a telephone call at my home from someone who was reading a carefully-worded script. That person had obvious intentions to raise questions about Sen. Sanders, while bolstering the positives of Sec. Clinton. In other words, this was anything but an unbiased “pollster.”
Moreover, this was not an isolated incident. Based on (1) several comments at the site, (2) e-mails I received, (3) comments on other political websites, and (4) many posts on both Facebook and Twitter during the previous four days, other Democratic voters too have received similar phone calls — not just here in Nevada, but other states, as well. Add what’s been happening this past week to information that was widely-reported in mainstream media back in 2008, that Hillary Clinton’s previous campaign organization had engaged in similar practices at least once before, and there’s mounting justification for collective concern. Just Google Clinton’s push polling tactics in the 2008 presidential race, which only adds to the legitimacy of suspicion we have now.
Here’s a devastating Tweet yesterday from former Obama campaign chief strategist David Axelrod. I’m not sure if he’s referring to “push polling” — at least in part — but the Tweet only adds to mounting concerns about the way Clinton is running her presidential campaign:
When the exact same problems crop up in separate campaigns, with different staff, at what point do the principals say, “Hey, maybe it’s US?”
— David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) February 8, 2016
Let’s be clear: If Hillary Clinton’s campaign had nothing whatsoever to do with the phone call I (and others) received this past week, then now it’s the time to clear things up with an official statement of denial and/or explanation. Whether the Clinton campaign will admit this or not, what’s happened has become a national news story. Just this morning, a caller on C-SPAN raised the issue, referencing reports of “push polling in Nevada.” [WATCH THE C-SPAN CLIP HERE]
Admittedly, my website isn’t The Washington Post, or The New York Times, or The Wall Street Journal. That said, my personal account of the telephone call has now received approximately 350,000 page views, which makes this an issue worth addressing. Fortunately, thanks to many other concerned voters, mostly progressive activists, suspicions have spread throughout social media outlets and must now be explained by someone from Hillary Clinton’s official campaign. Ignoring these concerns won’t make them go away. If history proves anything, it’s that things usually get worse when transparency is rejected. Silence can be deafening. It often sends the opposite message and ultimately becomes self-defeating.
Hillary Clinton’s campaign must step forward as soon as possible and set the record straight with an official statement as to whether or not she’s engaging in push polling or similar tactics designed to mislead voters and slander the opposing candidate. If this wasn’t part of her campaign and/or was done without the organization’s knowledge, then just say so. I’m sure other progressive media outlets would like some answers. I will go so far as to label this issue as “critical,” particularly for the candidate who still might become our Democratic nominee for president who will be seeking our support later on, despite lingering concerns of other moral and ethical failures, whether baseless or not. Once and for all, Sec. Clinton needs to put this to rest.
This isn’t an ultimatum. It’s a respectful request. I believe most Democratic voters do want a fair primary campaign and election that’s decided upon the candidates debating serious issues, not misrepresenting themselves and engaging in dubious political practices. If one of the candidates is violating unwritten rules and ethics of engagement, we will take that into consideration when we cast our votes.
Accordingly, I am forwarding this link to the Hillary Clinton campaign here in Nevada, her national campaign headquarters in Brooklyn Heights, NY, and the Nevada State Democratic Party. We’d like some answers.
We respectfully await for an official response.
FOLLOW UP: It’s been
ONE TWO THREE FOUR FIVE SIX SEVEN EIGHT NINE TEN ELEVEN 12 13 14 15 days since this request, and Hillary Clinton’s campaign has yet to confirm or deny any connection to negative “push polling.” [to be updated daily until we get a statement]
UPDATE: Here’s a story from ABC with a recording of a nearly identical pro-Clinton” phone call: CLICK HERE FOR AUDIO