Fox News host Greta Van Susteren was so upset by a recent viewer email calling her stupid that she put up an opinion poll asking followers to rate who's smarter -- Van Susteren or her detractor, "Brian."
"Who is dumber?" the poll asks. "Greta? Or Brian for spending his time watching someone he thinks is dumb?"
So far, Brian is winning. As of May 29, 78 percent of poll respondents agreed that Van Susteren is dumber than Brian.
Of course, Internet polls aren't scientific and are often hijacked by particular groups to make a particular point. But it seems, at the very least, that Van Susteren's fans didn't show up in enough numbers to defend her.
The controversy began early last week when Van Susteren received an email from Brian -- she withheld his last name -- telling her, "You have a mind like a seive [sic]. Your brain is empty. ... Matter of fact, it is so empty, if you put a pea in your skull it would rattle around like a BB in a boxcar."
"Why does Brian watch if he thinks I am so stupid? How stupid is that????" Van Susteren asked on her blog.
A few days later, the legal affairs correspondent had to admit her gambit had failed.
The poll was meant to be "a joke," Van Susteren wrote on her blog Friday. "Well...turns out that I am now losing the poll but only in the last 18 hours have the votes spiked. It turns out that since midnight, the poll has gotten an inexplicable number of hits even though it is 4 days old... Of course this is now a cyberspace game and I think it funny. I lost."
Putting up a poll on her intelligence is "a move that Fox executives probably would have tried to discourage had they been consulted," writes Michael Calderone at Yahoo! News.