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John McCain: Popularity Poll Truther?

Memo Pad Politics

John McCain: Popularity Poll Truther?


Public Policy Polling may say that John McCain is the least popular senator in America, but the Arizona Republican isn’t buying it.

Last week, PPP released a poll finding that just 30 percent of Arizonans approve of the job that Senator McCain is doing, while 54 percent disapprove. That makes him the least popular member of the Senate, according to PPP.

During a Monday appearance on Fox Business’ Cavuto, McCain pushed back against the numbers.

“There is a bogus poll out there,” McCain said. “I can sense the people of my state. When I travel around, which I do constantly, they like me, and I am very grateful.”

If McCain’s confidence in his ability to “sense” his true popularity reminds you of Republicans who were certain that 2012 polls were wrong, and that Mitt Romney would cruise to victory in the presidential election, you aren’t alone. Public Policy Polling director Tom Jensen responded to McCain’s attack against his poll by reminding the fifth-term senator of the dangers of poll trutherism.

“We’ve used the same methodology to measure the approval ratings of more than 85 senators in their home states, and Senator McCain has the worst approval numbers of any of them,” Jensen told Talking Points Memo. “That’s because he’s unpopular within his own party and unlike other Republican senators who have a reputation for working across party lines — the Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowskis of the world — he hasn’t earned much popularity with Democrats either.”

“I think we saw in 2012 what happens when Republicans try to just dismiss and ignore poll findings that they don’t like,” he added.

Were Jensen feeling boastful, he could also have noted that a Fordham University analysis found PPP to be the most accurate predictor of the 2012 election.

During his interview with Cavuto, McCain also took a moment to address his political future. Although he said that he is “seriously considering” running for Senate again in 2016, he reiterated that he has no interest in another presidential bid.

“I’m afraid that it is not a viable option,” he said.

McCain has shut down previous inquiries about his presidential ambitions by colorfully quoting the late Rep. Morris Udall: “The people have spoken — the bastards.

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr

Henry Decker

Henry Decker was formerly the Managing Editor of The National Memo. He is currently an Online Associate at MRCampaigns.

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  1. Dominick Vila March 12, 2014

    The big challenge for Sen. McCain is going to be getting the nomination of his party when he runs for re-election, rather than being re-elected if he is the nominee. A convicted serial killer would be elected in Arizona if his opponent is a Democrat, and John McCain knows that.

    1. Allan Richardson March 13, 2014

      Like Cheney? Oops, not convicted, in this country anyway.

  2. dpaano March 12, 2014

    McCain wouldn’t know the truth if it bit him on the heinie….kinda like Trump. I can’t stand watching or listening to either one of them!

  3. howa4x March 12, 2014

    McCain has never met a war that he didn’t like and he suffers from intervention fever. While we haven’t gotten out of Afghanistan yet Old Johnny was beating the drum for involvement in the Syrian civil war. Maybe the old hawk missed the sense in the voting population that we are weary of being 911 for trouble in the world.

  4. ThomasBonsell March 12, 2014

    This says things far more troubling than the popularity of John McCain in Arizona.

    I can think of senators who are far worse than McCain, as bad as he is, such as Ted Cruz of Texas, and several others along the Gulf States to the Atlantic. That their voters like their senators more than Arizonans like McCain is scarey, in deed.

    1. CPAinNewYork March 13, 2014

      The deep South has always been the crazy belt of the United States. The inhabitants have never understood how to vote their self interest. Instead, they vote the way their leaders tell them to vote.

  5. Billie March 14, 2014

    While I agree will of your posts, i

    1. RobertCHastings March 18, 2014

      No, that was the worst thing he did to himself. It pretty much assured his defeat in his run for the presidency. The worst thing he has done for US is backing George W Bush after what Bush did to him in the 2004 primary.


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