Responding to a poll that showed them trailing significantly, the campaign for Republican gubernatorial candidate David Williams is disputing the numbers in the race against Democratic incumbent Steve Beshear. The Williams campaign released a memorandum Thursday night, criticizing the cn|2 Pure Politics poll conducted by the Illinois-based Braun Research Group as inaccurate. Polling numbers showed Beshear holding a strong 21-point lead over Williams.
“Braun has a history of conducting faulty research on behalf of cn|2,” the memo reads. “It is important to remember just how inaccurate Braun was in Kentucky in the 2010 election cycle. The inaccuracy in most cases was a bias against the performance of Republican candidates who won handily.”
It highlights Braun’s polling in two separate 2010 general election races, the most prominent being a contest between Republican challenger Joe Bowen and former Democratic state Sen. David Boswell. Initial numbers showed Bowen down by 22 points while other surveys had the race much closer. In the end, Boswell lost the election by four points.
Asked about the campaign’s public complaints, cn|2 Pure Politics managing editor Ryan Alessi says he stands by the results.
“Any campaign can say whatever they want about the results, but I’m confident that the cn|2 poll and Braun Research that does the polling gets an accurate snapshot of where the electorate is at any particular time,” he says. “Poll results are not meant to be a predictor of what’s going to happen in an election, but rather an accurate picture of what likely voters feel at the time.”
Alessi points out the Williams campaign hasn’t challenged the survey’s methodology and the memorandum shows cn|2 was accurate during the closely watched 2010 U.S. Senate race, which showed Rand Paul beating Jack Conway in the last survey before Election Day.
“I’m sure any campaign would love to be ahead in all of the polls. We’re just trying to put out information to the voters about where there their fellow voters are in the thinking process about these races,” says Alessi. “We’re glad people are talking about it.”
cn|2 polling also showed independent candidate Gatewood Galbraith with just over five percent with 14 percent still undecided.