The following press release was issued today:
Memphis Mayoral candidate Jerry Lawler has been disenfranchised by a recent poll. A WREG-TV News Channel 3/Commercial Appeal Mason-Dixon Poll shows Mr. Lawler polling at just 2 percent. The poll was conducted over a two-day period and was a sample of just 400 "likely voters."
Upon news of the polling data, Mr. Lawler commented:
"I’ve been out working hard, campaigning, talking to the hard-working citizens of Memphis. I’ve talked to well over 400 people myself. And what I hear and what I see out there in the community is anything but what this new poll shows.
How can a poll be accurate when only sampling 400 "likely" voters? How can 400 people represent the complete 700,000 citizens of our city? You can’t predict and speak for 700,000 people by taking a sample of less than one-one-thousandth percent!
That says to me, that News Channel 3 and the Commercial Appeal have decided to disenfranchise the other 690,000-plus citizens of our city. They have decided who they want to win and will force this notion and this misconception on its viewers and readers in an attempt to manipulate the voting in just four weeks. It’s just more of the same tired, political games that have plagued our city."
Lawler, who finished third in his previous mayoral run in 1999, has been a major factor in the most recent polls. A CommercialAppeal.com poll in late July showed Lawler in second place with 28 percent trailing only attorney A.C. Wharton. A straw poll conducted following the first televised debate in mid-August revealed Lawler was the "most impressive" candidate by a whopping margin of over 30 percent to Wharton.
"After everything we’ve been through over the last two decades, it’s time this city and its voters hear all the voices, not just the ones who the media want you to hear," Lawler says. "By presenting this poll – which seems to be nothing more than old-time, political machine, media propaganda – the heart of this city’s voters are being ignored. Elections are not about popularity contests. They are about the candidate, the citizens, and the issues."
Though frustrated that the media would so blatantly choose to ignore voters, Lawler doesn’t seem surprised by the results.
"For months now, I’ve been talking about cleaning up this city. I’ve been talking about reducing crime. I’ve been talking about eliminating wasteful spending in our city budget, eliminating cronyism, and giving this city back to the people. I’m not surprised that as my campaign has started to gain unprecedented steam that ‘new polling data’ is suddenly uncovered that tries to discourage voters. Our career politicians and certain media outlets have vested interests in continuing the status quo in Memphis. They have no desire to see Memphis move forward and become a safer, cleaner, and friendlier city. The only poll I care about is the one that comes out four weeks from tonight on October 15."