Hannity's claim of veterans' support for Bush not the whole story


On the August 6 edition of FOX News Channel's Hannity & Colmes, co-host Sean Hannity concluded an argument with guest and Democratic strategist Steve Murphy about Swift Boat Veterans for Truth -- a group currently running an ad attacking Senator John Kerry's service in Vietnam -- by claiming that "Veterans are voting for Bush 58 to 35," apparently referring to a Rasmussen poll conducted August 3 and August 4. What Hannity failed to mention is that other recent polling shows Kerry running equal to Bush among veterans.

"For the first time this year, the Democrats run even with their opponents among veterans," CBS News reported of one finding in its most recent poll on August 2. In the poll, conducted July 30-August 1, Kerry garnered 47 percent of veterans' support to Bush's 48 percent, a statistical tie (margin of error: three points). This represents a major increase in support for Kerry among veterans. In a June CBS News poll, Bush was leading Kerry among veterans by 14 points (54 percent for Bush; 40 percent for Kerry); in a CBS News poll taken in mid-July, a week before the Democratic National Convention, that gap had narrowed to six points (47 percent for Bush; 41 percent for Kerry).

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