The local Republican party is conducting a straw poll for preferences in local and state races through May 13th.
The link directly to the survey is www.surveymonkey.com/r/5X5J2MZ
The poll asks for the respondent’s preference in all the local races: Commission Chair, Coroner, Tax Commissioner and Board of Education Post 1 as well as pertinent state offices and congressional races.
Stephen Hall, the vice chair of the local GOP, said the intent of the poll is to reach out and be more inclusive to people online, particularly people who may not be able to attend local meetings or events.
“We want this poll to build community involvement and be something [to create conversations],” Hall said.
He noted that many professional people, especially those who commute for work to the metro area, have a difficult time making GOP party meetings but appear to enjoy engaging with them on Facebook. He said since the local party began putting more emphasis on social media, their Facebook followers have almost doubled.
For the poll, Hall said they took basic technological precautions to prevent someone from completing the form numerous times to give the appearance that a candidate had much more support. Hall said he was also watching the results personally to detect anything that looked suspicious.
When asked if the online form is not automatically biased towards younger, more tech savvy candidates, Hall noted that was a concern but said the GOP as a whole needs candidates who are looking to engage voters in all formats.
“The candidates may need to be more technology oriented,” he said.
Hall said they will also bring copies of the poll to future GOP events. He said they want the largest sample possible, though he emphasized this is done primarily to engage the public, not to provide a look at where the campaigns are.