Liberal blog site Daily Kos and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) today announced a new partnership in public opinion polling. According to Roll Call, the groups plan to measure President Barack Obama's approval and favorable polling numbers each week.
The polling, conducted by Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, will be published each Tuesday on dailykos.com and feature testing on Congress, the generic Congressional ballot, Obama’s re-election and the two major political parties. Polling on “key races” will also be conducted, according to a press release announcing the partnership.
"Daily Kos is committed to advancing a new generation of progressive activists across the country and partnering with the 2.2 million members of SEIU is a huge step forward for everyone," Kos publisher Markos Moulitsas said in a statement. "Rather than sit around and have know-nothing pundits and politicians in DC tell us what the American people think, we prefer to ask them directly. And this partnership will allow us to conduct significantly more polling than any other media organization in the country."
It's unclear how the groups' polling data will be received by the professional political community as both organizations have a clear pony in the race. During the last election cycle, SEIU spent $10 million in independent expenditures to support Democratic candidates. In addition, the Kos site has always been unapologetically liberal. It's probably a good bet to assume the SEIU/Daily Kos polling data will find a captive audience in liberal media outlets.
In their very first poll, Kos and SEIU reportedly asked Americans were asked to weigh the option of impeachment for President Obama. The results, they claim, show that half of all Republicans belong to the party's of "lunatic fringe":
The results: 59% said they would oppose impeachment, 26% said they support impeachment, and 14% said they're unsure. Republicans support impeachment by a 48-31 margin, a number which Tom Jensen, our pollster, points out is almost identical to the 51% of Republicans (PDF) who think Obama was not born in the United States. Says Tom, "The lunatic fringe of the GOP is basically half of the party’s voters" - in which case, it's really not a "fringe," is it? ...
Ultimately, though, the Republican results show just how radical the party has become, and just how extreme its candidates will have to act, whether at the presidential level or further down the ballot. With a base this far removed from the mainstream, Republicans are going to have a difficult time demonstrating much crossover appeal to the rest of America - good news, of course, for Democrats.
"We continue to work to ensure our members have their voices heard in the political process and honest, objective polling plays an important role in identifying the issues that concern working families and the politicians that can best advocate for working people," said SEIU National Political Director Brandon Davis. "This partnership helps our members continue their efforts to improve the lives of workers and their families and create a more just and humane society."