This morning, out of nowhere, Public Policy Polling revealed to the world that it had polled the Colorado recalls, been on the money, but failed to release it. "In a district that Barack Obama won by almost 20 points," wrote PPP's Tom Jensen, "I figured there was no way that could be right and made a rare decision not to release the poll."
Here's some reflection on the results in CO last night based on polling we did in one of the districts last weekend: http://t.co/yzdZPe9kqw
The questions started to roll in.
@LoganDobson I was worried that with 1/3rd of Dems supporting the recall on the poll, they perhaps were confused by question wording...
And Jensen started to explain that the held poll was no big deal.
Love #tcot feeling like a private business has some sort of obligation to release all its work to the public
We are a private polling company. 90% of the polling we do is never released to the public, just like other private polling companies...
The number of polls we've done over the years we didn't release where a Democrat was winning far exceeds ones where a Republican was...
The rest of the political world cottoned on to this after Nate Silver started expressing outrage at the decision. In now-deleted tweets, Jensen called out Silver for being "bitter" at the polling firm. In the tweets that survive, Jensen only pleads for sanity.
Let's give a few whacks to PPP but agree that this doesn't ruin its credibility. "We didn't think the candidate could possibly be losing this badly" is an insane reason to hold a poll—that's a poll people want to read, especially on a race that had no public data at all! But if PPP was trying to cover up the decision, it could have by never admitting that the poll existed. Who was asking? There was no heat; the mistake was answered by transparency.