(Glastonbury, CT) The Marketing Research Association (MRA) endorsed legislation today in the state of Minnesota that would make it legal for researchers to do exit polling near a voting place. The bill, S.F. 2388, is being considered today in a hearing of the Senate Committee on State and Local Government Operations and Oversight.
MRA’s Director of Government Affairs, Howard Fienberg, PLC, explained, “exit polling does more than provide ammo for television news’ election night forecasting. This vital arm of research provides depth into how voters voted and why they made the choices they did.”
S.F. 2388, sponsored by Senator Katie Sieben (DFL-57), will promote genuine research by ensuring that exit pollsters can legally do their research near voting places in Minnesota. Current Minnesota statute doesn’t allow anyone “except an election official or an individual who is waiting to register or to vote.” This bill would add to that exception, “or an individual who is conducting exit polling” and define exit polling as “approaching voters in a predetermined pattern as they leave the polling place after they have voted and asking voters to fill out an anonymous, written questionnaire.”
Fienberg further emphasized, “It is not just television news outlets conducting exit polls. Plenty of survey and opinion research organizations are involved. MRA appreciates that all bona fide exit polling has been included in S.F. 2388.”
MRA will be offering any assistance possible to pass S.F. 2388.