When you're behind in every poll that's been taken in a race, you pray for that one poll that shows something different, even if it's wrong. Well, Dan Seals' prayer was answered in the form of a Roll Call robopoll over the weekend that showed Seals ahead of Mark Kirk, 52% to 44% (Roll Call also surveyed a bunch of other congressional districts). As noted by the Daily Herald blog, though, that doesn't match up with any other poll, including the one just done by the DailyKos, which Seals also thought was really good news for him.
Since lots of people seem to think it's important to analyze these polls to explain them away one way or another, here's my shot:
First, the Roll Call robo call surveys were done Saturday and Sunday, and these had greatly different results in the seven districts where surveys were conducted than what either Democratic or Republican campaigns in each district had been reporting. You tend to get skewed results when conducting survey on weekends, especially without live interviews.
Second, even the Democrat-favored survey DailyKos just did showed Kirk winning. The DailyKos poll, and every other poll done in the Tenth this year has shown Seals at no higher than 39% and Kirk always in the lead. In fact, the best numbers for Seals up until now were from Seals' own poll on Feb 7th and 8th (two days after primary), which showed him at 39%. Even Kos showed Kirk winning and Seals only at 38% -- a point below his own best on Feb 7-8.
So, the obvious conclusion here is that the Roll Call poll is a fluke or outlier. But, that certainly won't stop Seals from desperately grasping this poll as a lifeline to show DCCC and his supporters that he's not on the ropes. We'll see if they swallow it.
UPDATED 10:30 a.m. THE WORLD IS HANGING ON DAN SEALS' NEXT MOVE: My word, Seals is even more out there and egotistical than I thought. I just got an e-mail from his campaign stating:
"The latest poll conducted in this race has declared to the world what we have known all along: the 10th District wants a representative who will bring the change we need to Washington!!"
Holy moley. And I thought Barack Obama was trying to play to the world stage. At least he gave a speech in Germany. Seals has trouble getting an audience at local high schools unless they're bussed in by the unions from Chicago.