October 02. 2012 9:09PM

Tagg Romney, Sununu criticize poll

Senior Political Reporter

MANCHESTER — Tagg Romney wasn't quite as blunt as former Gov. John Sununu, but Mitt Romney's eldest son said Tuesday today a new poll showing his father 15 percentage points behind President Barack Obama in New Hampshire is an “anomaly.”

“We've seen lots of other polls, including our own internal polls, that have us inside the margin of error,” Tagg Romney said while campaigning across the state.

“Our own polls have us up a couple. We feel very good here. We feel like we've got a lot of momentum. Enthusiasm is high.

“New Hampshire has come through for us in the past and we think it will again,” Romney said.

Sununu, one of Mitt Romney's top surrogates, was more straightforward.

On MSNBC Tuesday, he called the poll showing Obama leading Romney, 52-37 percent, in New Hampshire “a piece of garbage.” The poll was completed by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center for WMUR television.

“This race in New Hampshire will be won by Mitt Romney by 2 to 3 points,” Sununu said. “I've said that all along, and I'm willing to say that publicly and stick by it, and I know that poll (of) 15 points is absolutely invalid.”

Later, Sununu told reporters that UNH polling is notoriously “volatile.”

“We are historically looking at skewing in the population of Republicans, Democrats and independents there.”

Sununu noted that Rasmussen Reports last week had a poll with Romney ahead by 3 percentage points in New Hampshire.

“There is no way you can have that kind of volatility,” he said. “Rasmussen has been quite good with New Hampshire polls.”

Tagg Romney said the state's relatively low unemployment rate does not tell the full story of economic strife facing middle class Granite Staters.

He said a sawmill worker this week hold him he is still employed, “but take-home pay has been stagnant or shrinking for everyone there because business is just off.

“They haven't seen any growth in the past four years and things just aren't getting any better,” he said.

Romney said tonight's first debate between Obama and his father will obviously be important, but not the most important thing.

“Just be yourself,” is the advice he said he gave Mitt Romney, as many Americans will hear Romney for the first time “unfiltered by the mainstream media's lens.”

“People know that Barack Obama's policies aren't working, but they want to know whether this other guy can be president,” Tagg Romney said.

Romney said he does not expect commentators in the mainstream media to declare Romney the winner.

“They're never going to do that, no matter what happens,” he said.

In this race, and generally, he said, “A Republican has to run against the Democrat and most of the media.”