Utah Governor Gary Herbert (R) signed H.B. 44 into law on March 26, 2013. The new law requires almost any survey regarding a declared political candidate or ballot proposition to disclose who sponsored the study to the respondent.
"This new law will produce less reliable research results, degrade bona fide research (and the sizeable Utah research industry) by equating it with advertising and marketing, and further drive down response rates. The Marketing Research Association (MRA) hopes that Utah realizes the gravity of their mistake before the state suffers too much damage from it," commented MRA Director of Government Affairs Howard Fienberg, PLC.
"Perhaps the biggest problem with the new Utah law is the bad precedent. New Hampshire can at least contend that their "push poll" law, and its deleterious impact on research, was a result of bad drafting," continued Fienberg. "Utah, on the other hand, has taken a thoroughly misguided approach that will hurt the research profession (and the research Utah residents and politicians rely upon) while doing little or nothing to diminish deceptive and abusive election campaign behavior."