Oregon Law Review
evidence, surveys, public opinion polls
Section I provides a basic overview of public opinion polls, beginning with a brief explanation of the current popularity of this type of data, followed by a discussion of the courts' historic treatment of survey evidence and a review of modern standards which courts use in evaluating the weight and admissibility of polling data. The exact "rules" governing the conduct of litigants and their respective counsel in commissioning and executing a survey and those governing the courts' refereeing of evidentiary disputes over polling data remain unclear. These unresolved issues are discussed in Section II. Suggestions for moving toward a more uniform and more practical method of evaluating the admissibility and weight of survey data are set forth in Section III.
Susan J. Becker, Public Opinion Polls and Surveys as Evidence: Suggestions for Resolving Confusing and Conflicting Standards Governing Weight and Admissibility, 70 Oregon Law Review 463 (1991)