Cherry picking poll data to make your case look better is nothing new - - I own up to it and I want to also note it when a unit of government goes down that narrow road.
Monday, March 15, 2010
In this case, it's the Waukesha Water Utility, which sent out through its public relations people last Friday a news release about its Lake Michigan water diversion and return flow plans.
In the release - - linked here - - Waukesha says a recent poll showed that 68% of respondents supported the diversion plan as long as it returned the water to the lake.
True enough - - but don't forget that return flow is required under the Great Lake Compact, so it's a settled issue; Waukesha has a plan to return the diversion as treated wastewater by discharging it into Wauwatosa's Underwood Creek - - a matter that will be settled ultimately by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources after independent study.
But here's the silent spin, by omission, which also undermines Waukesha's repeated claims that their drive towards a diversion will be "role model" transparent:
56% of respondents also said in the same poll that "Milwaukee should not sell Lake Michigan water to Waukesha unless Waukesha agrees to limit development and future water demands."
That information did not make the news release.
You can read the full poll results here.