Independent gubernatorial candidate Tom Marsh says his exclusion from today’s Quinnipiac University poll is “unacceptable,” but the poll’s director says it is good polling practice.

Douglas Schwartz, the poll’s director, said polls that prompt voters with a question about minor-party candidates get results that exaggerate their support.

Instead, Quinnipiac records the preferences of voters who say they intend to vote for someone other than Democrat Dan Malloy or Republican Tom Foley. In today’s poll, the vote for “someone else” came to 1 percent.

Tom Marsh

Tom Marsh, aka ‘someone else.’

Among unaffiliated voters, “someone else” got 2 percent.

Marsh can lay claim to any support registered in the name of someone else: He is the only other candidate for governor on the ballot.

Marsh, the first selectman of Chester, ran for the GOP nomination, then dropped out to run as the nominee of the Independent Party. He says he has been invited to participate in 10 gubernatorial forums this fall.

In an interview in March, he told the Mirror he is running as a small-town official frustrated with how local officials fare at the State Capitol.

“It all rolls down hill,” Marsh said. “We’re the tail on the dog here.”

Marsh said he resented listening to legislators talk about a need to entice municipal officials to experiment with regionalization. He sees no one in Hartford with any business advising municipalities.

“The first thought was, ‘I’m doing a lot of complaining. Why not give it a shot and get on the podium and say your piece?’ ” Marsh said.

By jumping to the Independent Party, a conversation that was going to end after the Republican State Convention in May has continued.

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

Leave a comment