Fake Polls Smear 'Muslim' Obama

Callers link candidate to Hamas, imply he is a Muslim in calls
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 3, 2008 12:15 PM CDT
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., speaks at a rally on the campus of Michigan State University in East Lansing, Mich., Thursday. Oct. 2, 2008.   (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
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(Newser) – The ugly tactic of “push polling” has resurfaced in key swing states, as fake pollsters seek to influence voters with scam questions that present an unfavorable view of Barack Obama, the Guardian reports. On one call, a Jewish voter in Pennsylvania says, she was asked if she would vote for Obama if she knew he was supported by the militant organization Hamas. "It is scare tactics," she said. "It is terribly underhand."

Calls in Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania have also made reference to the rumor that Obama is a Muslim—he's Christian—and stressed his association with Jeremiah Wright. The origin of the calls has not been determined, and Republican groups working on behalf of John McCain have denied using the tactic, which is believed to have led directly to his devastating loss in the 2000 South Carolina primary.