Survey Reports Oct. 1, 2008

Obama Boosts Leadership Image and Regains Lead Over McCain

Barack Obama has achieved a significant lead over John McCain in the days following the first presidential debate. Pew’s new survey conducted Sept. 27-29 finds that Obama has moved to a 49% to 42% advantage among registered voters. The race was virtually even in mid-September and early August. Obama had not led McCain by […]

Survey Reports Sep. 30, 2008

Small Plurality Backs Bailout Plan

As Congress debated the financial bailout bill over the past week, public support for government action has declined. A new Pew Research Center survey conducted Sept. 27-29 finds a narrow 45%-38% plurality of the public saying that a government plan to invest or commit billions of dollars to secure financial institutions is the right […]

Commentary Sep. 25, 2008

Uncertain Times

Commentary Sep. 25, 2008

The Candidates: In a Word

Weekly News Interest Index Sep. 25, 2008

McCain’s Image Faltered in Week of Wall Street Woes

Summary of Findings Views of John McCain turned somewhat more negative last week, amid record public interest in economic news. In a survey conducted Sept. 19-22, fully half of the public said their opinion of the GOP nominee had changed in the past few days, with 30% saying their opinion has become less favorable and […]

Survey Reports Sep. 24, 2008

Declining Public Support for Global Engagement

The public is feeling much better about how the war in Iraq is going these days, but at the same time has a sharply diminished appetite for U.S. efforts to deal with an array of global problems. Fewer people than at any point in this decade assign high priority to such foreign policy goals […]

Commentary, Methodology Reports Sep. 23, 2008

Cell Phones and the 2008 Vote: An Update

Survey Reports Sep. 23, 2008

57% of Public Favors Wall Street Bailout

By a margin of almost two-to-one the American public thinks the government is doing the right thing in investing billions of dollars to try to keep financial institutions and markets secure. Reacting to initial reports of the federal bailout plan over the weekend, 57% said the government was doing the right thing, while 30% […]

Weekly News Interest Index Sep. 18, 2008

Views of Palin Fluid as Spotlight Remains on GOP Ticket

Summary of Findings Sarah Palin continued to be a dominant factor in presidential campaign coverage last week, but her impact on the race remains unclear and her public image is very much in flux. Palin clearly has boosted John McCain’s visibility. From mid-June through the last week of August, Barack Obama consistently led McCain as […]

Survey Reports Sep. 18, 2008

McCain Gains On Issues, But Stalls As Candidate Of Change

With two eventful and closely followed political conventions now in their rearview mirror, voters’ views of Barack Obama and John McCain have changed in some ways, yet remain the same in others. What has not changed is that the race remains very close: a national survey of 2,509 voters interviewed Sept. 9-14 on both […]

Commentary Sep. 11, 2008

The Bounce Effect

Weekly News Interest Index Sep. 10, 2008

McCain’s Image Improves – With Big Assist From Palin

Summary of Findings The American public paid a lot of attention to the presidential campaign last week as the Republican Party took center stage. More than half watched at least some television coverage of the Republican convention in St. Paul, and the speech by GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin stands out as the highlight […]

Weekly News Interest Index Sep. 3, 2008

After Busy Week, Views of Both Candidates Improve

Summary of Findings Interest in the presidential election surged last week, with the public following campaign news more closely than at any point since the Super Tuesday primaries in February. As attention to the campaign has increased, the images of both Barack Obama and John McCain have improved in recent days. In a survey conducted […]

Weekly News Interest Index Aug. 27, 2008

Obama’s Background Better Known Than His Issue Positions

Summary of Findings As Barack Obama prepares to accept the Democratic Party’s nomination for president and frame his campaign message for the fall, many Americans still do not have a clear understanding of where he stands on the issues. Public awareness of Obama’s policy positions has increased modestly over the past month. Still, fewer than […]

Commentary Aug. 25, 2008

Obama’s Challenge

Commentary Aug. 22, 2008

A Closer Look at the Parties in 2008

Survey Reports Aug. 21, 2008

More Americans Question Religion’s Role In Politics

Some Americans are having a change of heart about mixing religion and politics. A new survey finds a narrow majority of the public saying that churches and other houses of worship should keep out of political matters and not express their views on day-to-day social and political matters. For a decade, majorities of Americans […]

Weekly News Interest Index Aug. 21, 2008

Strong Advance Interest in Democratic Convention

Summary of Findings The upcoming Democratic National Convention is generating much more public interest than did the party’s convention four years ago. Fully 59% of Americans say they are interested in following what happens at the Democratic convention, up from 36% in 2004. Nearly a third (31%) say they are very interested, while 28% say […]

Survey Reports Aug. 17, 2008

Key News Audiences Now Blend Online and Traditional Sources

For more than a decade, the audiences for most traditional news sources have steadily declined, as the number of people getting news online has surged. However, today it is not a choice between traditional sources and the internet for the core elements of today’s news audiences. A sizable minority of Americans find themselves at […]

Weekly News Interest Index Aug. 14, 2008

China Olympics Attract Considerable Public Attention

Summary of Findings The China Olympics are catching on with the American public and attracting a sizeable news audience. A majority of Americans say they are watching at least some of the Olympic coverage. Public interest in the Beijing games is comparable to that of the 2000 summer Olympics in Sydney; yet substantially lower than […]