McLaughlin Survey That Is Not


In the next 24 hours you might just start hearing mainstream media outlets reporting on a McLaughlin & Associates internal memo to Troutman Sanders regarding Saxby Chambliss.

The memo appears on M&A letterhead and purports to contain internal information regarding a conversation with “KR”, probably Karl Rove, as well as confidential polling data showing a very close race with lots of trouble for Saxby.

There is just one problem: the survey is “totally bogus” in the words of my friend Jim McLaughlin, whose company’s letterhead is on the memo.

Jim called me after both Creative Loafing and the AJC started calling his office for comments. Jim tells me McLaughlin & Associates is doing no work in Georgia right now and is absolutely not polling for Saxby. [UPDATE: Here is Jay Bookman writing about the poll.]

The memo is addressed to Steve somebody at Troutman. The last name was redacted in the copy sent on to McLaughlin & Associates.

The fake polling data is designed to show Allen Buckley being a serious impediment to Saxby’s victory, with the phony polling data showing Buckley outscoring Chambliss and Martin both on several issues and Martin inching ahead of Chambliss on other issues.

Based on the phony conclusions of the phony poll, Buckley is doing much better than he actually is doing in any of the real polling data out there.

So now the question is: who used McLaughlin & Associates letterhead to create a fake poll memo and leak it to the AJC and Creative Loafing? What other media outlets have gotten the polling memo?

And who is so desperate that they would take the time to do this? Martin supporters or Buckley supporters?


  1. Who benefits from this phony memo?

    a) Martin: If Chambliss had believed it he would have turned his attention to attacking Buckley and not Martin, which would have helped Jim. Having it shown to be a fake distracts Chambliss and Buckley as people point fingers.

    b) Buckley: If Chambliss had attacked him it would have raised his profile and made him appear to be in the hunt which would benefit him. With a proven fake, Buckley gets lots of free press as people wonder why he might be attacked.

    c) Chambliss: Given that the memo would quickly and easily be found to be phony, Saxby benefits from having attention drawn to who the source might be. People are unlikely to think it’s Saxby and thus direct attention toward Martin or Buckley.

    The lengths the prankster went to make the memo appear legit make me think it was a political operative. Where’s Morton Brilliant these days?

  2. GOPeach says:

    LOL You guys are funny.

    Things that make you go, ” Hmmmm”.

    Hey … I know –
    Let’s peek at Martin’s disclosures and see if he has
    been slid some greenbacks from Ann Cox Chambers. pffffft Ya think?

  3. kcordell says:

    Bookman once wrote that “doubt” was the basis of democracy. When I pointed out that freedom was the basis of democracy he replied that “doubt was the basis of freedom and therefore the basis of democracy.

  4. Bill Simon says:

    I’d like to proudly point out (to no one in particular) that I have not renewed my subscription to the AJC…and I don’t miss one solitary thing about not getting it.

    Reading about Jay Bookman’s column just reminded me that I can actually exist without reading his or Tucker’s meandering attempts at cogent thoughts.

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