Matt Cooper: Plastic pollsters pulling a stroke undermines trust and politics

The political parties’ cavalier attitude to revelations of fake polling suggests they think we’re as cynical as they are

12th June, 2021
Matt Cooper: Plastic pollsters pulling a stroke undermines trust and politics
Going to somebody’s door and asking them their voting intentions is fair enough; there’s nothing wrong with proper polling. But doing it while pretending to be someone else, such as a representative of a fictitious market research company, is a classic Irish political stroke. Picture: Getty

Strokes, as they’re known, are a longstanding part of Irish traditional political culture. To many participants, politics is a bit of a game in which it’s all about getting a leg up on a rival by fair means or foul.

In 1986, the late Breandán Ó hEithir wrote a wonderful book called The Begrudger’s Guide to Irish Politics that was full of stories of strokes pulled over the years. It was...

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