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criticizes Newsweek poll that found Obama leads
GOP candidates

criticizes Newsweek poll that found Obama leads
GOP candidates

A recent Newsweek poll showing Democrat Barack Obama leading top Republican presidential hopefuls could have fabricated and might help al-Qaida, conservative commentator Ann Coulter said in her latest verbal broadside.

Coulter, a best-selling author known for her outrageous statements such as the gay slur she made about Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards in March, was asked Sunday on Fox News' At Large what she thought about the survey results.

''I think this is Newsweek doing more push polling for al-Qaida,'' she said, referring to campaign-season telephone calls to voters masquerading as neutral surveys but designed to build opposition to targeted candidates.

Asked by host Geraldo Rivera whether she thought Newsweek would make up the results, Coulter said, ''Yes, I do,'' adding, ''In polls where people are actually allowed to vote, Republicans do a lot better.''

Coulter did not explain how the poll might help the terrorist group. Since the attacks of September 11, 2001, some Republicans have argued that their party would do a better job of protecting the United States against terrorism than Democrats.

Coulter's remark drew a response from Evans Witt, chief executive officer of Princeton Survey Research Associates International, which conducted the Newsweek survey.

''As the 2008 election campaign continues to heat up, I am sure that there will be informed and incisive criticisms of polls from many observers,'' he said. Coulter's comments ''do not fit into this category,'' he added.

Newsweek spokeswoman Jan Angilella said the magazine would have no comment. (AP)

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