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Daily Kos renounces pollster, threatens fraud suit

Updated 5:29 p.m.
By Garance Franke-Ruta
Markos Moulitsas Zuniga, the founder of the Daily Kos blog, disavowed the results of all polls conducted for his site by the firm Research 2000, alleging that they were unreliable and possibly fraudulent.

His accusation, posted on Daily Kos Tuesday:

"We were defrauded by Research 2000, and while we don't know if some or all of the data was fabricated or manipulated beyond recognition, we know we can't trust it," Moulitsas wrote.

He made the accusation based on a statistical analysis of the Research 2000 results that raised questions about their validity. Its conclusion: "We do not know exactly how the weekly R2K results were created, but we are confident they could not accurately describe random polls."

Given that outcome, Moulitsas declined to stand by any Daily Kos blog posts based on Research 2000 polls. "I no longer have any confidence in any of it, and neither should anyone else," he wrote. "I ask that all poll tracking sites remove any Research 2000 polls commissioned by us from their databases. I hereby renounce any post we've written based exclusively on Research 2000 polling."

One of the most provocative findings of the firm was that a substantial portion of Republicans did not believe President Obama was born in the United States. A July 2009 poll for Daily Kos found that 28 percent of Republicans were "birthers," as those who question Obama's birth place are frequently called.

Washington Post polling in April 2010 found similar results, with 31 percent of Republicans saying Obama was born in another country.

"Daily Kos will be filing suit within the next day or two," Moulitsas wrote.

Research 2000 president Del Ali referred all questions to his attorney. "I will tell you unequivocally that we conducted every poll properly for the Daily Kos," he said.

Nate Silver from the blog FiveThirtyEight has also raised questions about Research 2000's methods and results. On Tuesday afternoon, Ali's attorneys sent a "cease and desist demand " letter demanding Silver stop criticizing Research 2000 publicly.

In addition to Daily Kos, Research 2000 has polled for the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, Democracy for America and Credo Action and many other progressives.

By Garance Franke-Ruta  |  June 29, 2010; 4:21 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , Barack Obama  
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The daily KOS should kiss Research 2000's feet!

After all..without would "progressives", in the current political climate, gets any poll results that they would like?

Posted by: livfreeordi | June 30, 2010 8:27 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone notice that Real Clear Politics hasn't taken the Kos polls out of their average?

Posted by: vitaglubet | June 30, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse

So, Markos is in a snit. Too bad. Perhaps he will now crawl into a corner and cry that they didn't play fair.

Posted by: gfafblifr | June 30, 2010 11:06 AM | Report abuse

The rest of the story is: don't believe anything else Koz comes out with either.

Posted by: thebump | June 30, 2010 12:08 AM | Report abuse

Remember when Kos was the only poll that had Scott Brown even (not winning) and all the rest of their silly polls?

But you have to love the Post writer trying to rescue the R2k's birther poll by using the Post's poll for support.

Posted by: josettes | June 30, 2010 12:02 AM | Report abuse

so to back-up results of a research2000 poll, you cite a wapo poll?

Posted by: katem1


ABC News/Washington Post rated #2 in 538's pollster rating. What would you suggest as an alternative?

Posted by: washpost18 | June 29, 2010 10:32 PM | Report abuse

How amusing when a liar himself gets indignant!

Posted by: jamespmarion | June 29, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

How amusing when a liar himself gets indignant!

Posted by: jamespmarion | June 29, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

don't worry. Angle is not leading Reid, Obama did not wait 70 days to allow help for the spill, Bush has caused the new Hurricane Season, and the Health Care Bill is sure to pass court scrutiny just like DC and Chicago beat that silly 2nd amendment challenge.
There are no american voters anywhere near November, and those 60% plus of citizens that approve Arizona were just figments of the daily show's cast off jokes...

Posted by: Saladin3 | June 29, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Now that Kos has renounced its pollster, will they deal in facts or continue to pull their info out of their @zz3s?

Posted by: NoWayNotNow | June 29, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Seems like Moulitsas provided this info around June 10th, after Blanche Lincoln defeated Bill Halter (though I don't remember reading anything that connected the two events). I don't see anything new here that wasn't in his original blog.

Posted by: firethief | June 29, 2010 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Research 2000 denies any allegations of impropriety or fabricated data by the Daily Kos.

Research 2000 demands a retraction by Daily Kos and has hired legal representation to file a counter-suit to the original charges.

Posted by: joesmithdefend | June 29, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

Excellent news! Similar oddities have been noted in Rasmussen polls. Any chance of one of the numerous conservative blogs and news outlets who rely on them almost exclusively initiating a similar investigation?

Posted by: washpost18 | June 29, 2010 7:11 PM | Report abuse

so to back-up results of a research2000 poll, you cite a wapo poll? was it anything like the Good friday poll on wapo's front page saying "Majority of Americans against HCRBill". at the end of this story, which took two "reporters" to write, was the breakdown of the 1,009 poll respondents---93% were white, and 74% were conservative, hardly a TRUE sampling of 130,000,000+ voters. Polls, schmolls, a pox on them and their incestous relationship with the media!

Posted by: katem1 | June 29, 2010 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Correction: Research 2000 has not polled for the Swing State Project. The Swing State Project reports on polls, but it has not commissioned polls from Research 2000 or any other pollster. We would appreciate an update to this article.

Posted by: Crisitunity | June 29, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

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