September 2, 2009

Congressional Favorability at 24-Year Low

Midterm Voting Intentions Evenly Divided

About the Survey

Aug. 20-27 Survey

Results for this survey are based on telephone interviews conducted under the direction of Princeton Survey Research Associates International among a nationwide sample of 2,003 adults, 18 years of age or older, from August 20-27, 2009 (1,502 respondents were interviewed on a landline telephone, and 501 were interviewed on a cell phone, including 173 who had no landline telephone). Both the landline and cell phone samples were provided by Survey Sampling International. For detailed information about our survey methodology, see http://www.people-press.org/methodology/.

The combined landline and cell phone sample is weighted using an iterative technique that matches gender, age, education, race/ethnicity, region, and population density to parameters from the March 2008 Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey. The sample is also weighted to match current patterns of telephone status and relative usage of landline and cell phones (for those with both), based on extrapolations from the 2008 National Health Interview Survey. The weighting procedure also accounts for the fact that respondents with both landline and cell phones have a greater probability of being included in the sample.

The following table shows the error attributable to sampling that would be expected at the 95% level of confidence for different groups in the survey:

In addition to sampling error, one should bear in mind that question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of opinion polls.

Aug. 27-30 Survey

Results for the questions on most important problem, party traits and party issues are based on telephone interviews conducted under the direction of Princeton Survey Research Associates International among a nationwide sample of 1,005 adults, 18 years of age or older, from Aug. 27-30 (702 respondents were interviewed on a landline telephone, and 303 were interviewed on a cell phone, including 110 who had no landline telephone. The data were weighted using similar procedure as the Aug. 20-27 survey. Both the landline and cell phone samples were provided by Survey Sampling International. The error attributable to sampling is 3.5 percentage points at the 95% level of confidence.

ABOUT THE PROJECTS

This survey is a joint effort of the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press and the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. Both organizations are sponsored by the Pew Charitable Trusts and are projects of the Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan “fact tank” that provides information on the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world.

The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press is an independent opinion research group that studies attitudes toward the press, politics and public policy issues. The Center’s purpose is to serve as a forum for ideas on the media and public policy through public opinion research. In this role it serves as an important information resource for political leaders, journalists, scholars, and public interest organizations. All of the Center’s current survey results are made available free of charge.

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life seeks to promote a deeper understanding of issues at the intersection of religion and public affairs. It studies public opinion, demographics and other important aspects of religion and public life in the U.S. and around the world. It also provides a neutral venue for discussions of timely issues through roundtables and briefings.

This report is a collaborative product based on the input and analysis of the following individuals:

Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life

Luis Lugo Director
Alan Cooperman
Sandra Stencel Associate Directors
John C. Green
Gregory Smith Senior Researchers
Allison Pond
Neha Sahgal Research Associates
Scott Clement Research Analyst

Pew Research Center for the People & the Press

Andrew Kohut Director
Scott Keeter Director of Survey Research
Carroll Doherty
Michael Dimock Associate Directors
Michael Remez Senior Writer
Juliana Menasce Horowitz
Robert Suls
Shawn Neidorf
Leah Christian
Jocelyn Kiley
Kathleen Holzwart Research Associates
Alec Tyson
Jacob Poushter Research Analysts

Cite this publication: “Congressional Favorability at 24-Year Low.” Pew Research Center, Washington, D.C. (September 2, 2009) http://www.people-press.org/2009/09/02/congressional-favorability-at-24-year-low/, accessed on July 23, 2014.