Michael J. Fox Ad Could Help Cardin's Campaign
A study released today and mentioned on Daily Kos provides good news for Ben Cardin, suggesting that the Michael J. Fox ad on stem cell research is shifting voter attitudes. The study (with cool visuals of viewer responses) was done with the version of the ad that ran in Missouri, but it showed some whopping effects that probably apply to Maryland as well.
1. It increased viewer-stated support for stem cell research by 5%.
2. It increased the level of concern expressed a candidate's stance on the issue by 13%, including a 10% increase among Republicans.
3. Most respondents said that the ad was believeable and that the fall election was relevant to stem cell research.
But by far the most important finding was this, highlighted by Kos. Republican support for their candidate dropped by 10% after watching the ad, and support for the Democratic candidate from independents increased by 10%. I'm no scientist, but it seems to me that this is an immediate response, and the question of whether these shifts in voter attitudes last through the election is still up in the air.
But there is an undeniable truth here that this is in intensely powerful ad, and that it is influencing voter attitudes. And stem cell research is one of Michael Steele's weak points. The more we see this ad in commercial breaks and on news segments talking about the Limbaugh controversy (See Rush. See Rush stick his foot in his mouth. See Rush provide earned media to Democrats and help get them elected.), the more it will help Ben Cardin. So take another look at the ad, and pass it on to ten friends.