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UOG students conducting election polls

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 by Ken Quintanilla

Guam - A week from today, island voters will head to the polls. But in the meantime students from the University of Guam are working together with KUAM to come up with its own set of polls for the Decision 2014 election season.

"Polls just help the public to see relatively speaking what they think versus what another group of people thinks," noted political analyst Ron McNinch. His students at the University of Guam together with KUAM hope to get your feedback for this year's elections.

"But generally people are called at home and asked what their opinions are on various policies or candidates and things like that, and usually our poll is less than about five minutes. It's pretty brief," he said.

And while the results on Election Night are all that matters, why are polls so important? "And it helps people start talking about candidates and talking about policies," McNinch continued. "Really we like to do polling to help people talk about policies and things that are important to them - basically quite often people will attach themselves to various policies and that helps them get elected and we'd like to study that process also."

McNinch has done a poll in nearly all recent elections and says while they're not always an exact match to the actual election results, they're quite "congruent" and offer a "snapshot in time." He said, "Sometimes the person who is number one in the poll will finish in the middle because then people think they don't need my vote, or while they're popular they don't necessarily translate people actually voting for them."

The first complete poll should be out this weekend with another right before the primary. Thereafter, McNinch hopes to get a poll out every other week before the General Election on November 4. You will be able to get the results from the weekly polls during KUAM's upcoming D14 Tonight program that will air on Mondays leading up to the General Election.

While he encourages island residents to take part in this poll, it's your participation next Saturday on August 30 is what really counts.

"Vote, vote, vote. It is so important to participate," he said.

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