A new poll has been released by the pro-embargo organization Cuba Democracy Public Advocacy, purporting to show that Cuban Americans strongly support the embargo and travel ban. It was conducted my McLaughlin and Associates; the Herald covers it here and includes a link (pdf) to the poll itself.
I respect public opinion as much as the next guy, but I think we’re in trouble the day we start making foreign policy by polls.
As for this poll, it’s a joke.
A professional pollster asks neutral questions, such as: “Are you for or against the stimulus plan that Congress is now considering?”
If subjective statements are added, then you get something like: “Congress is considering an economic stimulus plan. Some say it will lift our economy quickly and prevent job loss; others say it will take too long to take effect and will greatly increase the national debt. What is your opinion?”
A professional would never ask: “Do you support or oppose the stimulus bill that may not work, and will saddle your children and grandchildren with debt?”
Or at least a professional pollster would not ask such a question and expect a reliable result.
The embargo question in this poll is: “Do you support or oppose the current
The travel question is: “Do you believe that Cubans who leave
While they were at it, they could have said, “travel to
At any rate, on the day President Obama fulfills his campaign promise, pollsters will be able to test opinion on something else: “Current policy allows Cuban Americans to travel to
Maybe that’s what prompted this poll in the first place.