Bud Kennedy

Vote for — Farris? TCU prof is named in presidential polling prank

Emily M. Farris, an assistant professor of political science at TCU.
Emily M. Farris, an assistant professor of political science at TCU. Courtesy TCU

The newest Republican presidential candidate is not only a no-name.

She’s no candidate at all.

Unknown Emily M. Farris of Fort Worth is rated favorably by 3 percent of Republicans in a survey by North Carolina-based Public Policy Polling.

Not bad for someone who isn’t even running.

“I was joking with them and said, ‘Throw my name in,’” the TCU assistant professor of political science said Thursday.

She drew 20 percent “unfavorable” reaction, so her net “favorable” rating is minus 17.

That wasn’t the worst.

“My ‘favorables’ are better than Chris Christie’s!” she said.

The New Jersey governor rated minus 21. All other Republican candidates drew positive ratings, with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker leading the Texan-heavy 2016 candidate field.

Farris said the poll of 685 primary voters ending Sunday proves “people will give opinions on something even if they don’t have an opinion,” she said.

She teaches survey research.

“It’ll amuse my class,” she said.

TCU professor Jim Riddlesperger said the survey proves “people don’t know names, and that’s the reason early polls are so fluid.”

Tom Jensen of Public Policy Polling messaged that Farris’ name was included “as a benchmark against the other little-known candidates — [like] comparing them to a name out of the phone book.”

Last week’s survey included a Detroit reporter who polled ahead of Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder.

As Jensen recounted it, “Farris said, ‘Test me too,’ so we did.”

In case you think she might be getting ideas, don’t worry.

“My political career is over,” she said.

At 31, she’s too young. Presidents must be 35.

The survey provided another laugh. Voters were asked: “Do you think that the Government is trying to take over Texas or not?”

Of Republicans nationwide, 32 percent replied “yes,” Another 28 percent weren’t sure.

They were still trying to place Emily M. Farris.

Bud Kennedy’s column appears Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays. 817-390-7538

Twitter: @BudKennedy

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