I think that most polls on space are pretty worthless, because the public is so ignorant about the subject. It doesn’t make much sense to ask someone if we should spend more or less on something when they don’t even know how much we’re currently spending within a couple orders of magnitude. But this particular poll is not particularly suspect.
[Update a while later]
Getting back to the Kos polling problem, some people don’t think that he acted so nobly:
The fact of the matter is, Kos has been – and continues to be – content to let the negative assumptions based on his published data remain in the air for as long as possible. He knew almost as soon as he first published it that this R2K anit-GOP numbers would come into question. He could have retracted it at any time, but he chose to let that bad data sit out there for months, causing as much damage as possible until he had absolutely no choice but to act.
Well, he may have bought himself a world of hurt anyway:
The attorney for Research 2000 and its owner, Del Ali, is threatening legal action too:
Ali’s attorney, Richard Beckler of Howrey LLP in Washington, told TPMmuckraker in an interview, “This guy [Markos] is completely all wet. This allegation of fraud is absurd.” He added, “These guys are basically ruining Mr. Ali’s business.”
Beckler promised to take “some kind of action soon against all of them” — referring to Kos and the three authors of the analysis calling R2K’s data into question.
Two pieces of good news in this story. First, a lawsuit will bring out the truth not only as to whether Research 2000 committed fraud, but the interaction between Markos and the polling firm. Was Markos pushing the polling firm for certain results, what was he telling them privately, etc. The e-mails between Markos and Research 2000 may be more interesting than the JournoList.
Second, the more money Markos spends fighting Research 2000, the less money he has to fight conservatives. I would not be surprised to see Markos set up a legal fund to fight this battle seeking donations from the base. Donate away, as far as I am concerned. Every dollar donated to Markos’ lawsuit is a dollar drained from some Democratic candidate somewhere.
As I said, live by the lie, die by the lie.