But if the Prime Minister pays any attention to the findings of a poll that was released today - he'd probably call the election for next month!
That's because the poll commissioned by the fledgling Independent Newspaper puts the UDP way behind the PUP.
Now, true enough, the Independent Newspaper is published by Glenn Tillett - who has been a supporter and employee of the PUP.
But more than that, this is a major poll, forty questions asked in face to face interviews, of over a thousand people - the entire project, designed, and executed by international Polling consultancies.
All that from a paper that just started up in November, two weeks after the poll was conducted.
Seemed strange to us, and certainly looked suspiciously similar to the covert workings of the Alliance.
But, the data is worth a look-over and some tough examination - and that's what we had today at the Chamber of Commerce Conference Room:..
Jules Vasquez Reporting
Meet Greg Strimple, he's from Boise, Idaho in the United States and described as a professional pollster.
And between October seventh and the seventeenth, 2011 his group - along with an outfit out of Costa Rica spearheaded a poll - supposedly on behalf of the Independent Newspaper - in which they say 1008 respondents' from across the country were interviewed.
Forty questions were asked and the results are decidedly against the UDP, the Prime Minister and the Barrow Administration Generally. Most notably, the poll claims that John Briceno had a 44% favourable rating, when he was no longer even leader of the PUP as opposed to Dean Barrow's 32%. Also, 5.6% more respondents said they would more likely vote for the PUP in an October election - that is even when the party only had an interim leader!
Stunning findings - and there are other surprises.
The sponsorship, for one, seems suspect - since the Independent Newspaper, which supposedly commissioned the poll, didn't even exist when it was conducted, and some of the questions, too, bear a closer examination. Like this one - and we'll read the whole thing, all 64 words:
"With the passage of the Amendment 9 Bill, Parliament would be able to alter the Constitution to effectively move Belize from Constitutional Supremacy to Parliamentary Supremacy which lets the Parliament and Prime Minister makes decisions and changes without taking care of the laws. Knowing this fact, do you strongly favor, somewhat favor, somewhat oppose or strongly oppose passage of Amendment 9 to the Constitution."
What kind of question is that?
Greg Strimple, GS Strategy Group
"I said this is a brief description of the-"
"But this is not a brief question. A poll is about questions, is then in the sense of-"
"I frequently ask questions like this."
"Wow. I say wow because I watched polls - I'm an ignoramus, but I just watch polls on CNN, and I've never seen anything like this."
"Well, you should never listen to polls on CNN; that's your big problem."
"What does it mean to say, "A Supremacy which lets the Parliament and Prime Minister make decisions and changes without taking care of the laws." I don't understand that phraseology."
"So this language was taken almost entirely - I don't have the article in front of me - but we took out of how it's being reported in the paper. And so - I don't recall."
"Does the science of polling say that one should avoid dragging characterization into fact? Is that frowned upon, or is that encouraged?"
"Well, like I said, this was taken - and I can't remember exactly what newspaper - this is language that was almost verbatim for how it was being described."
"Well, you'll have to tell me what paper it is because; as you know we have a plurality of opinions expressed in the newspapers."
"But most importantly is your inability to state your source."
"I will call afterwards, and I will get someone to send me where I can get them. Thank you."
We're still waiting on that call - and still waiting to find out who paid for the poll:
"How much does a poll like this cost?"
"I defer that question."
"You defer, okay. How does a startup newspaper able to afford a poll where the pollsters had to be engaged for 10 days? The good Mr. Greg Strimple had to be retained; one has to rent this 100 chair conference room. Just the little things, they add up to a chunk of funds."
Glenn Tillett - Editor, Independent Newspaper
"I'll tell you straight-up; I won't reveal the people - and there are several - who have donated and supported this cause, for the simple reason that they don't want to. The partisanship, the polarization in name-calling - in other words, they don't want to be driving their kids to school, they hear Joe, Juliet, Alfonso, Vaughn, and the other crew, speaking about them in that disrespectful way that we tend to. But they believe that it's a noble cause; they believe that it's going to help move our discussion forward, and as a result, they've been putting up the money."
"Are you able to say how much money?"
"At this point, I won't say. I am able; I won't say it."
"Are you able to say if Michael Ashscroft or any of his various moving hands, such as Godfrey Smith for example, is one of those persons involved?"
"I could say, but I won't say. I won't call any names; I will not have any of the people involved in this exposed in that way, no, not in this climate."
Regardless, he says he'll soldier on with more:
"Now, this poll is already outdated, and I'm hoping that we'll shortly be able to do another one. And we will be better at it, and now that people know that it's there, they will start to see more of it earlier. In the end, the people who are impacted by it will give it their own weight of credibility."
Tillett says he'll invite the media to put up questions for the next poll. This media house will only participate if and when it knows precisely and verifiably who is paying for the poll, how much is being paid - and who's organizing the logistics.