Guy Molyneux

Guy Molyneux is a partner and senior vice president at Peter Hart
Research Associates, where he directs the firm's trade union research division.

Recent Articles

Fancy Talk

(Flickr/White House photostream)
For some time, liberals have felt that their messenger-in-chief has been AWOL. In the wake of President Barack Obama's acquiescence to $38 billion in spending cuts, many targeted at vulnerable populations, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman wrote of the president that "arguably, all he has left is the bully pulpit. But he isn't even using that -- or, rather, he's using it to reinforce his enemies' narrative." Just three days later, the president allayed these fears somewhat when he released his own deficit-reduction plan as a direct counterpoint to the House Republican budget and delivered a powerful speech defending liberal ideals and a positive role for government. Obama called out the Republicans for seeking to end Medicare, slash vital investments in the future, and give new tax breaks to the wealthy. Nonetheless, concerns about the president's message, or lack thereof, predated his spending-cut deal with House Speaker John Boehner and will no doubt re-emerge at different...

The Big Five-Oh

A careful reading of recent presidential-election polls shows that the race is very close, and that if were held today, the result would likely mirror 2000's razor-close finish. If you had a different impression, that's certainly understandable, for nearly all media reporting on these same polls has suggested that George W. Bush enjoys a significant lead and will win comfortably barring a change in the race's dynamics. However, this media analysis is marred by a failure to take account of a phenomenon well-known to all political pollsters, the “incumbent 50-percent rule.” Almost all poll reporting focuses on the “spread,” that is, the difference in the percentage supporting Bush and John Kerry. If we take an average of the most recent ABC/Washington Post, CBS/ New York Times , and NBC/Wall Street Journal surveys, it shows Bush with 49 percent and Kerry with 44 percent among registered voters. Such survey results are invariably reduced to the shorthand “Bush up 5,” which sounds like a...