Fun with poll numbers in the Sixth

A poll commissioned by Sixth District independent congressional candidate Jeff Vanke has him within four points of Republican incumbent Bob Goodlatte.

OK, yes, there’s a catch. The two-question poll, conducted on Tuesday, resembled a push poll, pushing respondents on Vanke’s central campaign message of balancing the federal budget, and taking shots at Goodlatte over campaign contributions from the agribusiness sector and making a claim that Goodlatte backs costly agribusiness subsidies.

The 1,040 respondents to the poll still gave Goodlatte a 46 percent-to-42 percent lead over Vanke. Libertarian Stuart Bain polled at 4 percent.

Vanke will hold a press conference in Roanoke Wednesday afternoon to discuss the results with the news media.

The only public poll done in the Sixth District race, by Survey USA, whose numbers have tended to skew heavily toward Republicans, back in July had Goodlatte at 71 percent, Vanke at 12 percent and Bain at 7 percent.

Reporting by Chris Graham. Chris can be reached at

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