Weekly News Interest Index May. 3, 2007

Public Dissatisfied With Iraq Debate Coverage

Summary of Findings The debate over future Iraq war policy took center stage in Washington and in the national news last week. However, public interest in the story was modest at best as Americans expressed frustration with the quality of the debate and the clarity of the competing arguments. Only 18% of the public paid […]

Commentary May. 2, 2007

The GOP’s Invisible Men

Commentary May. 2, 2007

Surge in Support for Social Safety Net

Support for government programs to help disadvantaged Americans, as well as sympathy for the plight of the poor, have surged since 1994 and returned to levels last seen in 1990 prior to welfare reform, with gains occurring among virtually every major social, political and demographic group. Read full analysis at Pewresearch.org

Commentary May. 2, 2007

The Republicans Can’t Possibly Win in ’08…or Can They?

Republicans are facing an increasingly difficult political terrain in 2008. Yet horse race polls are showing that leading Republican candidates match up pretty well against the Democratic front runners. There are several reasons for this, but the bottom line is that Republicans can be competitive in 2008 — if their nominee is seen as an […]

Weekly News Interest Index May. 2, 2007

The GOP’s Invisible Men

Summary of Findings Heading into their first debate Thursday evening, what Republican candidates for the presidency need most is to gain visibility. The latest News Interest Index survey finds that two Democratic candidates – Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama – continue to be far and away the most visible, even to Republicans. When asked to […]

Survey Reports May. 2, 2007

Motherhood Today: Tougher Challenges, Less Success

Summary of Findings From managing busy schedules to dealing with outside influences, mothers have their hands full these days. There is broad agreement among the public that it is harder to be a parent today – especially a mother – than it was in the 1970s or 1980s. Fully 70% of the public says it […]

Survey Reports Apr. 26, 2007

Both Sides Reject Compromise in Iraq Funding Fight

Summary of Findings With battle lines drawn over legislation funding the Iraq war, the public is showing little appetite for compromise. Overall, a solid majority of Americans (59%) continue to say they want their representative to support a bill calling for a U.S. troop withdrawal from Iraq by August 2008, while just a third want […]

Weekly News Interest Index Apr. 25, 2007

Widespread Interest in Virginia Tech Shootings

Summary of Findings The shootings at Virginia Tech University overshadowed all other news stories last week – both in terms of coverage and public interest. Fully 45% of Americans paid very close attention to the tragedy and 56% said it was the single news story they followed more closely than any other last week. However, […]

Survey Reports Apr. 23, 2007

Little Boost for Gun Control or Agreement on Causes

Summary of Findings Last week’s shootings at Virginia Tech have had little immediate impact on public opinion about gun control. Six-in-ten Americans say it is more important to control gun ownership, while 32% say it is more important to protect the right of Americans to own guns. Opinion has changed little since 2004, when 58% […]

Commentary Apr. 18, 2007

Most Say Imus’s Punishment Was Appropriate

Weekly News Interest Index Apr. 18, 2007

Most Say Imus’s Punishment Was Appropriate

Summary of Findings Americans, both black and white, generally agree with the punishment radio host Don Imus received for the racist and sexist remarks he made about the Rutgers University’s women basketball team. Nonetheless, there are substantial racial differences in views of Imus’s punishment, and an even bigger gap in opinions about news media’s coverage […]

Survey Reports Apr. 15, 2007

Public Knowledge of Current Affairs Little Changed by News and Information Revolutions

Summary of Findings What’s Your News IQ? Take the Latest Quiz Since the late 1980s, the emergence of 24-hour cable news as a dominant news source and the explosive growth of the internet have led to major changes in the American public’s news habits. But a new nationwide survey finds that the coaxial and digital […]

Weekly News Interest Index Apr. 12, 2007

High Interest in Early Campaign

Summary of Findings High-profile candidates and the accelerated pace of the 2008 presidential campaign have drawn the public into the race far earlier than in past election cycles. In this week’s survey, 55% of Americans say they are tracking news about the candidates for the 2008 presidential election very or fairly closely. Public interest has […]

Commentary Apr. 12, 2007

Money Walks

The Republican Party has traditionally garnered it strongest backing from wealthier voters. But the recent overall decline in Republican party affiliation nationwide has even taken a toll on GOP support among affluent voters. The latest Pew surveys find partisan parity among registered voters with annual family incomes in excess of roughly $135,000 per annum. Read […]

Commentary Apr. 12, 2007

The Immigration Divide

Commentary Apr. 5, 2007

Who Do You Trust for War News?

Survey Reports Apr. 5, 2007

News Leaks Remain Divisive, But Libby Case has Little Impact

Summary of Findings The recent conviction of former White House aide Scooter Libby for perjury and obstruction of justice focused renewed attention on the subject of news leaks — the unofficial dissemination of newsworthy, politically sensitive information to the press and public. Libby’s case centered on the leak of former CIA operative Valerie Plame’s identity, […]

Weekly News Interest Index Apr. 5, 2007

Little Confidence in Military or Press Depictions of Iraq

Summary of Findings Four years into the Iraq war, most Americans say they have little or no confidence in the information they receive – from either the military or the media – about how things are going on the ground. Fewer than half (46%) say they have a great deal or fair amount of confidence […]

Commentary Apr. 4, 2007

The NRA’s Image Improves as Support for Gun Control Slips

Each year since its occurrence in 1999, the April 20 anniversary of the Columbine High School tragedy renews debate about the desirability of stricter controls on firearms. Recent surveys, however, find Americans less disposed to gun control than they were in the years surrounding the shootings. Read full analysis at Pewresearch.org

Survey Reports Mar. 29, 2007

Democrats Fail to Impress in First 100 Days

Summary of Findings As the Democratic-led Congress approaches the 100-day mark, pluralities of Americans approve of the way that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are handling their leadership roles. However, the public gives Democrats mixed reviews for delivering on their campaign promises and for their policies and proposals. Slightly more […]