This note, from the Cook Political Report, could be the first real-life consequence of the lawsuit filed by left-wing blogger Markos Moulitsas against the polling firm Research 2000. It comes in the context of Cook’s decision to move Iowa’s Senate race from “solid Republican” to “likely Republican,” and then back again:
However, just days after we moved the race, Markos Moulitsas, the publisher of Daily Kos, filed a lawsuit against Research 2000, alleging that the polling firm had defrauded him by providing national survey data that was “fabricated or manipulated beyond recognition.” Research 2000 has denied the allegations and has even threatened to file its own lawsuit against Moulitsas. Read more about the lawsuit here. Daily Kos was perhaps Research 2000’s largest client and was conducting polling in Senate and Governors races in addition to national tracking surveys.
It doesn’t appear that Moulitsas’ lawsuit is a fit of pique, but instead is supported by a statistical analysis of the data. Most polling experts seem to agree that something was amiss in Research 2000’s work. At this point, we made an editorial decision to stop using Research 2000 surveys in the analysis of specific races… In the interest of due diligence, we went back and looked at the…surveys without considering the Research 2000 polls. The most recent polls are all IVR surveys, and all showed Grassley between 53 percent and 57 percent, while Conlin was between 31 percent and 40 percent.
I doubt it matters much either way in Iowa, but it is interesting to see a serious figure like Cook throw fuel on Kos’s fire.