Desperation: Hilariously pitiful rubbish masquerades as Trump poll

REUTERS/Carlos Barria
President Donald Trump
There’s an old saying for those of us who spend too much time obsessing on politics that fresh poll numbers are “crack cocaine for political junkies.” It’s funny because it’s true.

I’m old enough to remember when there were only a few polling operations and they put out fresh numbers much less often. And even back then, it was silly to make too much of them.

But now that there are so many pollsters and such a constant stream of fresh numbers, it’s even truer, even if the fresh numbers meet the fairly high standards of proper sampling, etc.

But still, a certain rigorous objectivity and careful choice of words in poll questions and in analysis may produce some “crack” that’s worth more than others.

Then there’s hilariously pitiful rubbish masquerading as polling.

A friend of mine, for reasons that he doesn’t understand, has landed on some of the email lists that are supposed to be reserved for the Trumpiest of Americans. And he forwarded one of those emails to me the other day that at least feeds my belief that the Trumpiest of the Trumpy are increasingly desperate to believe the unbelievable, especially in these dark days, when it’s harder and harder for the Trumpiest to ignore the evidence that the current occupant of the Oval Office might be in some political, legal and moral trouble.

It pretends to be a poll but obviously is more of a desperate plea to the chosen to form a circle, hold hands, and keep repeating that everything is going great, everything is going good, everything is going at least “OK.” (I choose those words advisedly, as they come from a “poll” sent only to Trump supporters, which, makes it something other than a meaningful measure of public opinion.)

I’m pretty sure that a poll that’s supposed to ascertain how the occupant is doing won’t be valid if it’s taken only among those known to support him, and especially if the list of responses to a question about how the president is doing is limited to four: Great, good, okay and other.

Seriously. I hate to be this snotty, but here is the top of the email sent to my friend, labeled “authorized by Trump Headquarters,” and asking recipients to participate in something the authors hilariously labeled as the FIRST Official Presidential Job Performance Poll of the 2020 re-elect campaign!

From the email:

The Mainstream Media continue to release polls showing that the American people do not approve of President Trump’s job performance.

But when the President went from state to state campaigning at rallys this year, he was overwhelmed by the energy and support from American patriots, like you.

That’s why he asked us to launch the FIRST Official Presidential Job Performance Poll of the 2020 re-elect campaign!

Since you will be one of the first to take this poll, your response will have a HUGE impact on the results. Please take the poll below to show the Mainstream Media what Americans really think.

How would you rate President Trump’s Job performance?

GREAT

GOOD

OKAY

OTHER

Thank you for your input. We’ll be sure to pass it along to President Trump.

Presidential Polling

Trump Headquarters

Comments (37)

  1. Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/18/2018 - 09:25 am.

    Some years ago, I used to receive fundraising appeals from the national Republican Party. I routinely threw them in the trash, until I got one with a survey. The questions were ridiculously slanted, asking things like “Do you approve of President Carter’s decision to stand idly by when the Russians station thousands of troops in Cuba?” Even my lifelong Republican father found it absurd.

    I gave all the “wrong” answers, and added a note on the bottom that not everyone on their list is Republican. I never heard from them again.

  2. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/18/2018 - 09:50 am.

    You know what will be like mountain climbing with a concrete block chained to your ankle?

    The Trump reelection campaign has swallowed the entire GOP 2020 campaign structure. I’m sure every race will love to have Trump on trial.

    By the way, you can send your thanks for that block and chain to Trump….

    https://www.committeetodefendthepresident.com/thank-you-mr-president/

    Thanks, President Trump !

  3. Submitted by Greg Smith on 12/18/2018 - 09:55 am.

    Shockingly, I received a phone poll during a MN house election cycle to or 3 cycles ago.
    Basically it amounted to “Would you vote for the Rep. Candidate if it were proven he stole candy from babies and pushed old people into traffic”. The DFL candidate disavowed any knowledge. The point being, no side is pure. That said, the current crop of GOP are beyond the pale. Hopefully they will be replaced by sensible people.

  4. Submitted by John Evans on 12/18/2018 - 10:41 am.

    “Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize the half of them are stupider than that.”
    — George Carlin

  5. Submitted by Jeff Michaels on 12/18/2018 - 11:40 am.

    I also hate to be “snotty” about this but Donald Trump did win the only poll that counts two years ago and Democrats and their Fellow Travelers in the news media still cannot accept that reality.

    Trump was a political novice who had never run for office. He stood up to Democrats and the news media illustrating how ineffective and inadequate they have become. Those folks could not accept what happened and had to find a reason they suffered such a historic defeat.

    And the only reason Trump won, of course, was because he collaborated with those brilliant but sneaky Russians. Yeah that’s it, they put they most avowed capitalist to ever run for the presidency in office.

    Gosh, do you suppose those sneaky Russians are also the reason all those Democrats were elected to the House of Representatives in 2018? Democrats and the news media don’t seem to be too concerned about Russian meddling in that election.

    Their silence is as revealing as it is devastating.

    • Submitted by Marc Post on 12/18/2018 - 11:57 am.

      Trump lost the popular vote by about 3 million votes. The electoral collage is no poll.

    • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 12/18/2018 - 12:12 pm.

      Golly Gee Wilikers, I didn’t know Trump was president? Also didn’t know he won the popular vote? Also didn’t know that the media, except for Fox News and other conservative news outlets are required to pay homage to politicians that lie at least 70% of the time, and a new “the Bottomless Pinocchio,” had to be created just for Trump’s dishonesty!
      So, since the media has been calling out Trump’s dishonesty, that is a bad deal, but on the other hand “Their silence is as revealing as it is devastating” How are we to believe your comment isn’t a Russian plant, just set out here to disfranchise us from democracy? Kind of proves Erik’s point about the Trump survey!
      https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2018/12/16/new-report-russian-disinformation-prepared-senate-shows-operations-scale-sweep/?utm_term=.6ff2863a61cf
      PS: No, I don’t believe the sneaky Russians helped the Dems. Perhaps you can provide some support to why “the news media don’t seem to be too concerned about Russian meddling in that election.” Seems there is quite a bit of that available for the Trump Election.

    • Submitted by Frank Phelan on 12/18/2018 - 12:25 pm.

      Don Trump didn’t stand up to the corporate media, it fell over for him.

      He also benefited from Comey’s letter, and from Comey’s subsequent statement that there was nothing on the lap top in question.

      One media outlet that we know was on the side of on Trump was the National Enquirer, which facilitated illegal hush money payments to his former girlfriends.

      And while the media still gets played by Don Trump on a daily basis (both sides-ism, anyone?), he can’t count on the Comey letter ten days before the election, as well as finding it more difficult to find co-conspirators willing to commit felonies to get hi,elected.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/18/2018 - 12:49 pm.

      “And the only reason Trump won, of course, was because he collaborated with those brilliant but sneaky Russians. Yeah that’s it, they put they most avowed capitalist to ever run for the presidency in office.”

      You need to update your references, sir. Russia is now a capitalist state, heavily reliant on cronyism, official corruption, and shady dealings.

      No wonder they have such an affinity for Trump.

    • Submitted by Edward Blaise on 12/19/2018 - 01:07 pm.

      The Ds are 2 weeks from taking office and you think they should have already acted on 2018 interference?

      Time will tell. Almost impossible to be as bad as the Rs: Still grilling Comey on the Steele Dossier and Hillary’s email server this week as we get Flynn’s Russian acknowledgements.

  6. Submitted by Curtis Senker on 12/18/2018 - 02:10 pm.

    Breaking!!! Trump polls his base!! Leftists Outraged!!!

    • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/18/2018 - 02:19 pm.

      No, read it again –it’s ” Trump polls his base! Leftists amused !!!”

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/18/2018 - 02:26 pm.

      Whose outraged? I am alternately amused and saddened by the thought that there are adults around who will accept this kind of poll as proof of anything. On the one hand, it’s amusing to picture this collection of low-watt bulbs filling the survey out (“Uh, let’s see, I’m gonna say Great for everything!”) and thinking they’ve owned the libs this time. On the other hand, no one can like the fact that there are adults out there who are this gullible.

      • Submitted by Curtis Senker on 12/18/2018 - 06:13 pm.

        Who’s bulbs are lower wattage; Trump voters that answer a poll about their feelings on his work, or leftists that think the polling firm was instructed to care what they think?

        • Submitted by John Evans on 12/19/2018 - 03:59 am.

          That’s actually pretty good.

        • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/19/2018 - 09:42 am.

          I’ll vote for the people who answer the poll, thinking their input is important and the answers they might give are in doubt.

          There are also the people who think the left is “outraged” by yet another Trump ego-stroke, but we’ll leave that for another day.

        • Submitted by ian wade on 12/19/2018 - 02:11 pm.

          Anyone that votes for a guy who puts his name on buildings, lives in a gilded palace, bangs porn stars, pays them, declares bankruptcy 4 times and is thrice married, yet thinks he’s a God Fearing, man of the people and astute businessman, is still operating by candlelight.

      • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/18/2018 - 10:09 pm.

        What is really hilariously sad is Trump having paid for Don Jr’s $7.00 boy scout fees from the Trump Foundation money.

        First, this is the nadir of the incredible pettiness of a wealthy man (that a 1/3 of the country thinks is looking out for them)

        Second, there is the casual repetitive criminality of the act by the chief law enforcement officer (that a 1/3 of the electorate thinks is looking out for them)

        Third, his lawyers are working on the “it’s not a crime if he does it” defense

        Fourth, there are those who will go to their grave believing that it was right what he did.

        Hilariously sad.

  7. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 12/18/2018 - 08:55 pm.

    “Leftists Outraged” One should really be asking the question; Why aren’t the righties outraged?
    Crooked Trump President (70%+ lie factor)
    Cooked Trump[ University
    Crooked Trump Charity
    Crooked Secretary of Interior
    Crooked EPA Administrator
    Crooked Secretary of Health and Human services
    Crooked former personal Lawyer (fixer)
    Crooked Former United States National Security Advisor
    Crooked Former Campaign manager
    Crooked Former member of the foreign policy advisory panel (Campaign)
    and on and on and on.
    Guess the common note here is that Trump’s base could give one whit, about law and order, the country, our environment, health, etc. much less the constitution.

    • Submitted by Gary Fredrickson on 12/19/2018 - 12:11 am.

      Trump’s base, from the people I know, care about law & order, the country, our environment, health etc.and the constitution. They just disagree with you and what you get outraged by. Believe me when I say I could list just as many things as you did about Obama, Hillary etc. and I am pretty sure you would show no outrage.
      I would never try to defend everything that President Trump does, He was not my first choice but the alternative was unthinkable.
      Dennis Miller said it best. They could have just put two boxes on the ballot. Hillary and not Hillary.

      • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/19/2018 - 09:48 am.

        “Believe me when I say I could list just as many things as you did about Obama, Hillary etc. and I am pretty sure you would show no outrage.”

        I think that meme has about run its course. Donald Trump has a history of shady, illegal dealings. His business was built on stiffing contractors and wealth transfers of dubious legality. There is his documented history of racism and sexism, just for a little gravy. Don’t forget the fraud lawsuits–anyone care to make a donation to the Trump Foundation?

        The desperate need of Trump supporters and Trump enablers to build some kind of equivalence, and to claim that they voted for him because “the alternative was unthinkable” doesn’t fly. Trump voters were, and seem to remain, willing to overlook behavior that is, at best, merely borderline criminal because they have fostered some animus against Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Gender and race are, of course, pure coincidence, and had nothing to do with voting for the most overtly racist candidate since George Wallace.

        • Submitted by Curtis Senker on 12/19/2018 - 01:50 pm.

          “and to claim that they voted for him because “the alternative was unthinkable”

          The safety of the US constitution via the SCOTUS for the next 30 years withstanding.

          • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 12/19/2018 - 03:41 pm.

            Right; I keep forgetting that the main issue for Trump devotees is the judiciary.

            The rest of it–the bigotry, the graft, the diminution of America’s stature in the world–that’s all gravy.

          • Submitted by Matt Haas on 12/19/2018 - 09:02 pm.

            Interesting choice then, of a president who considers it nothing more than overly fragile toilet tissue.

      • Submitted by ian wade on 12/19/2018 - 02:18 pm.

        Nah, they are about “owning the libs.” If they cared about health, they wouldn’t have shouted “let them die” during GOP debates when questions of insurance coverage came up. If they cared about the environment, they wouldn’t have voted for a guy that dismisses a climate report with a a curt “I just don’t believe it.” They also wouldn’t be applauding threats to lock up reporters, political enemies and anyone else that dares disagree with Trump.
        Can’t wait to see the list you spoke of. Real stuff, now…not imaginary crimes.

      • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 12/20/2018 - 08:12 am.

        ….I would never try to defend everything that President Trump does….

        Well then you should fully support the oversight that is coming in the new term.

      • Submitted by Joe Musich on 12/20/2018 - 06:40 pm.

        I thought that was how the mid term election ballot boxes were labelled. Not Him vs Dem….

  8. Submitted by Edward Blaise on 12/19/2018 - 10:19 am.

    A world of alternate reality is the only option for Trumpians these days. The guilty pleas, indictments and new investigations are impossible to defend.

    Even poor FOX news, I watched a little last night on the very night of the Flynn sentencing judgement and they led with the Steele Dossier (it’s fake!), switched to liberal lawsuits on immigration and wrapped up with you tube highlights of absurd things.

    And this is where Trumpians go for “real news”

    • Submitted by Steve Roth on 12/19/2018 - 12:37 pm.

      When you ignore everything, know nothing, and fall for anything (that your leader says)…it’s very cult-like.

      And to keep it that way, so that 30% doesn’t sway, there’s the gaslighting, alternative facts, “polls” and daily umbrage and outrage about “witch hunts” unfairness, and a media outlet that selectively covers it all, continuing to feed paranoia masquerading as patriotism and “us against them”…

  9. Submitted by Mike Ryan on 12/21/2018 - 12:05 pm.

    What a silly column. The headline says it all: This Masquerades as Trump Poll. Writing about this “poll” as any representation of Trump supporters is a lazy, non-sourced excuse for the MinnPost faithful to heartily agree with each other in their bubble.

  10. Submitted by carl brookins on 12/23/2018 - 04:57 pm.

    I get a lot of surveys; from the right the left the up and the down. They are uniformly worded badly to telegraph the answers they want. Sometimes I edit and return.Other times I explain that their survey is a reason why I will never again send a contribution to X party or Y candidate. I know it does little or no good but it does sometimes reduce the load on my mailbox or my email program. Sometimes I get some satisfaction telling the sender how stupid the survey makes them seem.

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