Wednesday, October 01, 2008

A Republican Called

Yesterday, I answered the phone and the caller stated that she was calling from the Republican Party and asked if I could answer a few questions. Well, I love a survey because I have plenty of opinions, so I said OK. I am registered as an independent which makes me a coveted swing vote for this fall's election. So, I've expected to be courted by both parties, and now it has begun.

Anyway, she asked me something like which of the following four issues is most important to me for the coming election:
  1. Oil (I don't remember her exact phrasing on this one)
  2. Low Taxes & Jobs (exact words)
  3. Right to Life & Same-sex Marriage (phrasing is close to how she stated it)
  4. Securing the Border (phrasing is close)
I asked, "Are those my only choices?" I was shocked by the lack of issues like the War in Iraq, the economy (though implied), caring for the poor, global responsibilities to equitably distribute wealth, health care, the environment, and education in the US, among others. Well, yes, those four were my only choices.

I, in a split second, then attempted to reason my way through them, even though none of these as stated was my top issue for the election. I wanted to discuss the complexities of each option, but this was not the format for that.

I selected "oil," because none of the others made sense as presented for a variety of reasons, including issues of state's rights, the current economic situation, what a president's role truly is, my world view in response to Scripture, and so on. Oil is not my most important issue for the election, but the only one of the four choices that remained after briefly thinking about each. So, now I am reminded again to be sceptical of statistics. If I hear "independent voters polled reported oil as the #1 issue for the 2008 election"...that would not be the whole story!

I think the only other question she asked was, "Can we count on your vote for John McCain?"

1 comment:

Coral & Jake said...

What a fabulous testament to the gross failings of "polls" as facts. As if this election boils down to only 4 questions and if those are the ones the "Republican Party" is focusing on I'm curious to learn what the other Parties are asking.

You'll have to divulge your opinions on the other hot topics you listed for inquiring minds like mine. lol