AZ exit polling: voters reject what the GOP is selling


The Arizona Republic had some exit polling this morning that made some important points. Education, economy concern voters:

  • Democrats, Republicans and independents voting in Arizona’s primaries on Tuesday largely said improving education and the state’s economy were the top concerns bringing them to the polls.
  • Voters interviewed outside polling places around Maricopa County were nearly unanimous in saying that the sources of “dark money” flowing into campaigns should be disclosed.
  • Voters also said they weren’t persuaded by candidate ads trying to drag the Obama Administration and border security into the political debate.

We just suffered through a GOP primary in which the GOP candidates did exactly the opposite. The GOP primary devolved into fear mongering over border security and demonizing refugee children from Central America, demonizing President Obama and Governor Brewer’s expansion of Medicaid (AHCCCS) under “ObamaCare,” and the adoption of Common Core Standards (which comes from the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices, not the federal government). The GOP candidates were awash in undisclosed “dark money,” and filing complaints against one another over it.

In his victory speech last night, Doug Ducey vowed to make Arizona a “shining example of spending discipline,” reform the K-12 education system to emulate the best practices of the state’s best schools, and fight federal programs like Obamacare and Common Core. Ducey wins GOP nomination for AZ governor. This is exactly the opposite of what the exit polling says voters want.

The Arizona Republic’s Linda Valdez correctly observes today, Ducey’s flavor is Extreme Edge:

GOP standard bearer Doug Ducey hits all the conservative notes – anti-Obama, anti-Common Core, anti-government, anti-immigration – in his victory lap. This shows the folly of those who said he was swinging far right just to win the primary.

What you see with Ducey is what you will get: The flavor is Extreme Edge.

Maybe Linda should take this up with her editorial board which endorsed Ducey in the GOP primary. Don’t repeat this mistake in October.

The exit poll issues are the very issues that Democratic candidates have been talking about in this campaign, but the media has not been covering them or giving them the attention they deserve because the media has been fixated on the GOP primary. Since Democrats are offering voters what the exit polling says the voters want, maybe now is the time for the media to start reporting on the Democrats, for a change.

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AZ BlueMeanie
The Blue Meanie is an Arizona citizen who wishes, for professional reasons, to remain anonymous when blogging about politics. Armed with a deep knowledge of the law, politics and public policy, as well as pen filled with all the colors stolen from Pepperland, the Blue Meanie’s mission is to pursue and prosecute the hypocrites, liars, and fools of politics and the media – which, in practical terms, is nearly all of them. Don’t even try to unmask him or he’ll seal you in a music-proof bubble and rendition you to Pepperland for a good face-stomping. Read blog posts by the infamous and prolific AZ Blue Meanie here.


  1. Exactly, Bruce J! I was just sitting here wondering why we are so overwhelmed with the R incumbents kicked out office. Someone, please, explain the cognitive dissonance between the exit polls and actual voting.

  2. Given the notorious unreliability of exit polls, I am a bit skeptical at the optimism you express about the dim prospects of the GOP in this election. However, if it makes you feel better to think that the current sense of anger the GOP base feels towards Obama and the Democrats will not motivate them in the general election, then more power to you.

    • Two things wrong with this. First, actual exit polling is among the most reliable polling available. Political scientists rely on it. If this is just reporters taking anecdotal statements, then it is not an actual exit poll.

      National polling is also showing that President Obama is not a motivating factor to anyone other than partisan Republicans who live in the closed conservative media information feedback loop. “The McClatchy/Marist College poll suggests the 2014 election isn’t really about Obama. In fact, most registered voters — and the vast majority of swing voters — say he’s not even a factor for them.”

  3. Oh heck, most of the time THEIR ACTUAL VOTING is opposite of what exit polling would indicate.

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