Emails confirm Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod tried to intimidate Gallup
By: Dan Spencer (Diary) | September 6th, 2012 at 08:19 AM
David Axelrod and the Obama campaign have some explaing to do.
The Daily Caller’s Matthew Boyle reports that emails between senior officials at The Gallup Organization, show senior Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod attempted to intimidate the polling firm when its poll results found Mitt Romney leading President Obama.
According to Boyle, after Gallup declined to change its polling methodology, Obama’s Department of Justice hit it with an unrelated lawsuit:
“Since Gallup first roused Axelrod’s ire, Obama’s Justice Department revived old allegations against the firm that, according to now former Gallup employee Michael Lindley, the polling company violated the False Claims Act by over-charging the federal government for its services.”
Boyle explains that “Michael Lindley was a field organizer in Council Bluffs, Iowa, for then-Sen. Obama’s 2008 run for president before joining Gallup, a fact omitted from the DOJ’s legal filings and from most press accounts.”
In a very Nixonian abuse of power the Obama/Holder Justice Department announced it was joining the lawsuit on August 22, 2012. The announcement also indicated that the Justice Department plans to assert additional claims related to Gallup’s subcontract with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). During most of the two weeks before the announcement, Gallup’s tracking poll showed Romney leading Obama 47 to 45 percent.
Contrast team Obama’s treatment of Gallup to that of Nate Silver. As Buzz Feed Politics reports, team Obama was more appreciative of silvers work and rewarded him.
“Obama’s polling analysts, Issenberg writes, wanted to test their internal polls against Silver’s model. And so — in an unusual step for the closely-held campaign, and for the analyst, who was then running his own website, FiveThirtyEight.com — the Obama campaign offered Silver access to thousands of its own internal polls, on the condition Silver sign a confidentiality agreement, which he did. (Silver, who now writes a widely-read blog for the New York Times declined to comment on the arrangement.)”
You really must go to the Daily Caller and read some of what is in the emails. Here is a teaser:
“In response to that email, a third senior Gallup official said he thought Axelrod’s pressure “sounds a little like a Godfather situation.”
“Imagine Axel[rod] with Brando’s voice: ‘[Name redacted], I’d like you to come over and explain your methodology…You got a nice poll there….would be a shame if anything happened to it…’”
In a second email chain titled “slanderous link about Gallup methodology,” another senior Gallup official noted that a Washington Examiner story on Axelrod’s anti-Gallup tweet was “on [the] Drudge [Report] right now,” before writing that the episode was “[s]o politically motivated, it’s laughable.”
“As they say in b-ball: he’s trying to work the refs,” that official wrote to other senior Gallup staffers. “What a joke. Axel’s had a bad week. He got in the middle of the Ann Romney thing. Then said the country is going in the wrong direction. (Oops!) Now he’s swinging at us….””
The Axelrod vs. Gallup story is more evidence that Obama is losing and the campaign is desperate. The Good news is that Gallup did not cave in to the attempted “intimidation” and now the story is public. Does the Axelrod vs.Gallup story explain why we have seen so many skewed polls during this campaign?
The main stream media should Demand that Axelrod and Gibbs tell the truth about what happened. As Boyle writes, the emails contradict what Axelrod’s fellow Obama campaign adviser Robert Gibbs told the Washington Times’ Kerry Picket this week about the campaign’s dealings with Gallup:
Picket reported that Gibbs said he was unaware of any communications between the Obama campaign and Gallup.
Was Gibbs lying to Picket? Was he misinformed? The emails suggest its one or the other.