I’ve heard of slow news days before, but this is ridiculous.
State Comptroller Susan Combs trumpeted a survey Tuesday showing – as she wrote in the forward to a 15-page report – that a mere 3.4 percent of employers surveyed believe the Affordable Care Act will be good for their business.
Nearly two-thirds said federal health care is bad for business, her office reported. A total of 12.5 percent of respondents have reduced staffing due to health care reform. More than half expect higher costs due to federal health care reform.
But don’t look for a margin of error or other scientific underpinnings.
It’s not a scientific survey, as Combs freely acknowledged at her news conference with the heads of the Texas Association of Business (Bill Hammond) and National Federal of Independent Business/Texas (Will Newton).
Her poll was conducted online by SurveyMonkey (for $300 a year, she said, her office gets unlimited surveys).
About 21,000 members of the Texas Association of Business and NFIB were emailed to see if they would like to participate.
A total of 919 did so during the time the survey was posted, from Dec. 6 to Jan. 10.
That’s out of about 448,000 businesses in Texas, Combs said.
I’m not sure which is more pathetic, that an elected state official thought a Survey Monkey survey was newsworthy, or that at least four mainstream news outlets agreed with that assessment. Kudos to the Chron at least for noting the origins of the survey, which mitigates the punking somewhat. You have to admire Bill Hammond’s ability to get all those partisan talking points in unrebutted. Anyone can fire off a press release, but only a master gets to speak from the podium. Perhaps next we’ll get an official report on how a totally scientific survey of business owners reveals they favor lower taxes, fewer regulations, and a return of the three-martini lunch. Just remember, you heard it here first.