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September 26, 2004

About Mystery Pollster

Email Address: questions@pollster.com
Website: http://www.pollster.com
Phone: 202-393-3195


I have been in the political polling business for more than 18 years, conducting and analyzing political polls and focus groups for Democratic candidates and market research surveys for major corporations. My experience includes work with pollsters Harrison Hickman, Paul Maslin, Kirk Brown, Celinda Lake, Stan Greenberg and the last 12 with my partners David Petts and Anna Bennett in the firm Bennett, Petts and Blumenthal.

My academic background includes a Political Science degree from the University of Michigan and course work towards a Masters degree at the Joint Program in Survey Methodology (JPSM) at the University of Maryland. I have also served as a guest lecturer at the Communications School at American University and at training seminars sponsored by EMILY’s List, the Democratic National Committee and the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs.

Disclosure: I am a Democratic pollster, and as such conduct research for Democatic candidates for office, mostly at the Congressional or Statewide level but my firm is not conducting surveys for either the Kerry campaign, the DNC nor any of the independent expenditure campaigns working on his behalf. On this blog, I will refrain from commenting on polling in any race in which we are also polling. The views expressed on this blog are mine alone and may not reflect those of my business partners or our clients.

Why "Mystery Pollster?" That name was the anonymous alias blogger Mickey Kaus gave me when he printed excerpts from emails I sent him. Kaus always knew my name; he just chose to keep it off the record. When I decided to start blogging it seemed natural to keep the name. I liked the ring of it, especially the play on "demystifying,” and the subtle homage to Kaus, who kindly alerted the blogosphere to the existence of this blog.

[updated 12/12/2005]

Note:  This site is now inactive.  You can find an up-to-date version of my bio on the about page on Pollster.com


Please note:  When I orginally created this page I inadvertently allowed comments.  While I certainly weclome  comments on all posts, I have chosen to close comments here largely because I rarely look at this page and will likely miss your posts.  If you have a general question or suggestion,  please feel free to email me at: questions@pollster.com 

Related Entries - MP Housekeeping

Posted by Mark Blumenthal on September 26, 2004 at 08:24 PM in MP Housekeeping | Permalink


Topic suggestion:
Why the Exit Polls (or rather leaked exit polls) were so wrong yesterday.

Yet, so convincing that it unnerved Karl Rove, buoyed John Kerry and left Tucker Carlson (Jon Stewart was right about him) and his peers discusseing why Bush seemed like he was destined to lose at 5pm. And were the final exit poll numbers still inconsistent with the final result? Why? How could they have improved their numbers?

Keep up the great work, Mark! And congrats on the new Blumenthal in your life. :)


Posted by: Rory | Nov 3, 2004 9:03:09 PM

Could you kindly point your readers to a site which maintains a complete, accurate, thorough, final tabulation of the vote for President for 2004? Washingtonpost.com has not updated theirs since November 24, so their tally does not reflect provisinal ballots counted in Ohio after that date, to cite only one example. It would be nice to be able to refer to a site which maintains a current, correct count.

Thank you in advance!

Christopher A. Stratton
West Hartford, CT

Posted by: Christopher Stratton | Dec 19, 2004 7:10:11 PM

I'm having a discussion over at DKos about possible reason for the discrepancy between early exit polls and final results (nationwide), and whether exit polls are likely to be weighted by turnout. If so, is it possible that because historically high turnout has favoured Dems, early predictions erroneously inflated Kerry's share of the vote because high turnout was already apparent?

The issue could be critical in deciding whether the discrepancy could be attributable to either higher than predicted Republican turnout in a high turnout year, or to suppression of the Democrat vote.

Posted by: Febble | Jan 1, 2005 12:52:30 PM

Hey, I read an article called "Firing the consultants." Among it arguments, Democrats need to give their best young talent in consulting a national stage. Examples offered included Anna Bennett. The article mentioned that Anna helped Melissa Bean. From what I've heard, she also worked on the Chet Edwards campaign. Since you work with her, could you tell me some about her competance.

Posted by: Nadia Hassan | Feb 25, 2005 7:08:23 AM


Anna Bennett is one of the best pollsters in the business! Of course, it should come as no surprise that I'm a bit biased regarding my business partners.

Having said that, the Washington Monthly incorrectly identified Anna as the pollster of record. My firm certainly polled for Melissa Bean, but the work was done by our VP Jill Normington and my other partner David Petts. All credit for the polling on the Bean races goes to Jill and Dave.

You are correct that Anna Bennett did poll for Chet Edwards.

Posted by: Mark Blumenthal | Mar 1, 2005 2:29:35 PM

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