January 10, 2006


Newspapers, pollster refuse to publish 'stunning' findings (Jack Aubry, January 10, 2006, The Ottawa Citizen)

Two major newspapers and a pollster decided to sit on the results of a weekend poll that showed a double-digit breakthrough by the Conservatives over the Liberals because they felt it would be irresponsible to release the "stunning" numbers on the day of the English debate.

Calling it a "difficult decision," Frank Graves, the president of Ekos Research Associates, said he and his media clients, the Toronto Star and Montreal's La Presse, agreed to do further polling yesterday to increase the sample size to 1,200 respondents. He confirmed the weekend findings -- from a sample of 500 calls -- indicated Stephen Harper and the Conservatives were on their way to forming a majority government similar to the ones enjoyed by Brian Mulroney in 1984 and Jean Chretien in 1993.

"In a normal setting we would have released it, but in the context of a 500-case poll with the results we had in last night, we didn't think it would be responsible on the day of the debate," Mr. Graves said.

Are they not going to cover the election if they don't like the results?

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 10, 2006 10:17 AM

No, they'll cover it. It'll just be a complete fraud like ours are when they don't like the results.

Posted by: John Resnick at January 10, 2006 10:57 AM

The journalistic theory of higher truths.

Posted by: Peter B at January 10, 2006 11:18 AM
Are they not going to cover the election if they don't like the results?

Well, that would be an improvement...

Posted by: Kirk Parker at January 10, 2006 11:35 AM

I read this earlier, and I'm pursuaded. They could be lying or deluded, but you always take that chance. One day, larger sample, harder to dispute. Sounds good to me. Of course, one would hope were the reverse true and the Liberals were ahead, they'd have still waited a day...

Posted by: RC at January 10, 2006 12:56 PM

I think many Canadian journalist will follow the template of their late fellow countryman, Peter Jennings, who after the 1994 elections said the American public had just thrown a temper tantrum. They'll cover the election, make crude asides that the public childishly threw aside the Liberal government and try to make Harper into George W. Bush's long-lost brother once the Conservatives take power.

Posted by: John at January 10, 2006 6:48 PM

Whatever happened to The Public's Right to Know ©?

Posted by: Matt Murphy at January 10, 2006 9:07 PM