Garamendi pollster challenges SurveyUSA spin



Tulchin Research pollster Ben Tulchin, who conducted candidate and Lt. Gov. John Garamendi’s recent internal poll, scoffed at SurveyUSA’s statement earlier today that the 10th Congressional District race is a toss-up among the top three Democrats.

In a poll commissioned by KPIX-TV, SurveyUSA concluded that Garamendi, state Sen. Mark DeSaulnier and Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan are “bunched” together at the top. Based on its definition of “bunched,”  coupled with the expected low turnout in a stand-alone election, they concluded that any one of the three could prevail on Sept. 1.

The SurveyUSA poll of 552 likely  voters of both major parties and decline to state shows Garamendi with 26 percent of the vote, an 11-point lead over DeSaulnier at 15 percent followed by 12 percent for Buchanan.

“It’s just wrong,” Tulchin said. “SurveyUSA just wanted to grab some attention and a toss-up is a sexier headline.”

Tulchin’s poll of likely Democratic and independent voters found Garamendi with 31 percent of the vote, a 10-point lead over DeSaulnier with 21 percent followed by 17 percent for Buchanan.

Both polls confirm Garamendi’s lead in the race, Tulchin said.

And if you look even deeper into the SurveyUSA poll, Tulchin said, there is no room for either DeSaulnier or Buchanan to bridge the gap. Garamendi leads among all ethnic groups, women and people age 50 and older, a group that votes in high numbers. He also received 14 percent of the vote among Republicans polled, second only to GOP candidate David Harmer.  And only 11 percent of those polled say they are undecided.

“It’s almost impossible for any of the other Democrats to win,” Tulchin said.

Lisa Vorderbrueggen