A national cookie poll accurately predicted the presidential winner in a second consecutive election. The Retail Bakers of America (RBA), McLean, Va., and participating retail bakeries concluded the 2008 Presidential Election Cookie Poll last month, naming Barack Obama the winner.
Bakeries around the country allowed their customers to “vote” for their next president. Weekly totals were submitted to RBA for tallying. Bakeries offered decorated cookies with Barack Obama's and John McCain's name, photo or caricatures to their customers. Customers could “vote” as many times as they wished. Some bakeries offered cookies for the vice presidential candidates and third-party candidates, while others offered election cupcakes. RBA only tallied cookie sales for the presidential nominees. One cookie equaled one vote.
This is the second election for which RBA has held the cookie poll. The first was in 2004, when RBA accurately predicted the next president as George W. Bush. This year, the poll predicted a 59 percent to 41 percent lead for Obama through nationwide cookie sales.
More than 74,000 cookies were sold in a nine-week period among 53 bakeries in 25 states. The cookie poll successfully predicted the winner in all of the states except Missouri, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Texas. Obama may have won the cookie poll, but retail bakeries were the true winners in the contest with a boost in cookie sales and the national spotlight on their creative promotion.