On Fox, Luntz asked debate focus group of Clinton and Obama: "[H]ow many of you want them to make love to each other?"

››› ››› MATTHEW BIEDLINGMAIER

On Hannity & Colmes, while conducting a focus group analysis of the February 21 Democratic presidential debate, Frank Luntz asked the focus group participants: "How many of you want [Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton] to really argue? Raise your hands." Luntz then asked: "And how many of you want them to make love to each other?"

On the February 21 edition of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes, while conducting a focus group analysis of the February 21 Democratic presidential debate, Fox News contributor Frank Luntz asked focus group participants if they "wanted" to see Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton "argue." When several of the participants responded, "Yes," Luntz asked, "You want them to take it on? You all agree with that?" After more participants concurred, Luntz asked: "How many of you want them to really argue? Raise your hands." Luntz then asked: "And how many of you want them to make love to each other?"

Luntz has a history of reported reprimand and censure by his peers. In 1997, the American Association for Public Opinion Research reprimanded Luntz for refusing to release documentation in support of comments he made to the media regarding his polling work on the Contract with America, according to a 2000 Salon.com article. Washington Post polling director Richard Morin reported in 2000 that the National Council on Public Polls "censured pollster Frank Luntz for allegedly mischaracterizing on MSNBC the results of focus groups he conducted during the [2000] Republican Convention."

From the February 21 edition of Fox News' Hannity & Colmes:

ALAN COLMES (co-host): Well, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton squared off in another debate tonight in Texas. Our own Frank Luntz is on the ground for a reaction from a new focus group of undecided Democratic voters. And, Frank, we here, we didn't see it. We're busy in show prep and doing our show. So maybe you can fill us in. How did it go tonight, and what's the crowd there saying?

[...]

LUNTZ: Your reaction to the debate?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was somewhat bland. It wasn't the fireworks that we were led to believe.

LUNTZ: So you wanted fireworks?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I sure did. I agree with everybody else that says that basically the two of them agreed on everything.

LUNTZ: You guys wanted fireworks?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

LUNTZ: No, you don't. You're Democrats. Don't you want to defeat George Bush and John McCain and all that Republican stuff?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We already have.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think the Democrats are going to win anyhow.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Regardless. But, we need to get the best candidate out there. And if they're not going to debate each other, what's the use? I mean, they're agreeing with each other. Hillary's nodding her head all night long.

LUNTZ: You wanted them to argue?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

LUNTZ: You want them to take it on. You all agree with that?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

LUNTZ: How many of you want them to really argue? Raise your hands. And how many of you want them to make love to each other? Alan, go ahead.

COLMES: Frank, what I want to know is how many people changed their vote because of tonight and which way did they change it?

LUNTZ: This is a question. Did any of you walk in here supporting Hillary and now supports Obama? None of you.

Did anyone here walk in here supporting Obama and now support Senator Clinton? None of you.

Who were the undecideds when you walked in? Truly, deeply undecided? Where did you go?

Network/Outlet
Fox News Channel
Person
Frank Luntz
Show/Publication
Hannity & Colmes
Stories/Interests
Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, 2008 Elections
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