Commentary Jan. 28, 2008

The South Carolina Democratic Primary in Black and White

The results in Saturday’s Democratic primary in South Carolina offer important evidence — if not yet answers — to three big questions in this campaign: Can Barack Obama solidify all segments of the black vote behind him? Can he be competitive among white voters, especially in the South? And can we trust pre-election polls in […]

Commentary Jan. 25, 2008

Raising McCain

Nearly lost in the blizzard of recent poll reports were the findings of a Gallup survey that the current Republican frontrunner, John McCain, might well give each of the two Democratic frontrunners a run for their money. When Gallup asked 1,598 likely voters whom they’d back if the presidential election were held today, respondents chose […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 24, 2008

Housing Crisis More Visible Than Other Economic Problems

Summary of Findings Public interest in economic news soared last week amid continued stock market volatility and concerns about a possible recession. More than four-in-ten Americans (42%) followed news about the condition of the U.S. economy very closely and 20% listed this as the single news story they followed more closely than any other. That […]

Survey Reports Jan. 24, 2008

An Even More Partisan Agenda for 2008

Summary of Findings With the economy slowing and the stock market reeling, there is greater agreement among Republicans and Democrats that strengthening the nation’s economy should be a top priority for the president and Congress in the coming year. By contrast, partisan differences over the importance of other domestic issues — such as dealing with […]

Survey Reports Jan. 24, 2008

Laura Bush’s Declining Favorability

Summary of Findings Laura Bush, once almost universally liked, has seen her favorability ratings slip along with her husband’s over the past three years. Currently, a slim majority of Americans (54%) say they have a favorable impression of the First Lady, down from 70% in August of 2004. The number saying they have an unfavorable […]

Commentary Jan. 18, 2008

Mind the Gender Gap

A lot of attention has been paid to the women’s vote in the first two Democratic nominating contests. In the Iowa caucuses, Barack Obama won a narrow victory over Hillary Clinton among female voters. But in New Hampshire women rallied to the former first lady giving her a huge 46 percent to 34 percent margin, […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 17, 2008

Democratic Primaries Register Strongly with Public

Summary of Findings There has been no shortage of drama in either party’s early presidential primaries, but in the public’s view the Democratic contest has been far more compelling. Four-in-ten Americans (40%) say they find the Democratic primary race very interesting, nearly double the proportion describing the Republican race as very interesting (21%). While press […]

Survey Reports Jan. 16, 2008

In GOP Primaries: Three Victors, Three Constituencies

Summary of Findings The Republican nomination contest is being increasingly shaped by ideology and religion as it moves toward the Super Tuesday states on Feb. 5. John McCain has moved out to a solid lead nationally, increasing his support among Republican and GOP-leaning voters from 22% in late December to 29% currently. Mike Huckabee, at […]

Survey Reports Jan. 11, 2008

Internet’s Broader Role in Campaign 2008

Summary of Findings The internet is living up to its potential as a major source for news about the presidential campaign. Nearly a quarter of Americans (24%) say they regularly learn something about the campaign from the internet, almost double the percentage from a comparable point in the 2004 campaign (13%). Moreover, the internet has […]

Commentary Jan. 11, 2008

The G.O.P.’s Unanswered Question

Thursday night’s Republican debate in South Carolina in the wake of John McCain’s comeback victory in New Hampshire and Mike Huckabee’s surprising win in Iowa emphasized what a difference one week can make in the nomination process. And in terms of who will get the nod, it raises more questions than answers. Sen. McCain’s win […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 10, 2008

Intense Iowa Coverage Leads Many to Say “Too Much”

Summary of Findings In the wake of his victory in the Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses, Barack Obama for the first time supplanted Hillary Clinton as the most visible presidential candidate. Overall, 38% of Americans say they heard the most about Obama in the days immediately after the caucuses (Jan. 4-7), while 28% named Clinton as […]

Commentary Jan. 10, 2008

Getting It Wrong

The failure of the New Hampshire pre-election surveys to mirror the outcome of the Democratic race is one of the most significant miscues in modern polling history. All the published polls, including those that surveyed through Monday, had Sen. Barack Obama comfortably ahead with an average margin of more than 8 percent. These same polls […]

Survey Reports Jan. 4, 2008

The Public’s Not-So-Happy New Year

Summary of Findings The American public begins the new year with a highly negative view of national conditions and tempered expectations for 2008. Half of Americans say that as far as they are concerned, 2008 will be a better year than 2007, while 34% say it will be worse. In December 2006, and in several […]

Survey Reports Jan. 2, 2008

McCain and Huckabee Catch Up to Giuliani Nationwide

Summary of Findings On the eve of the Iowa caucuses, Rudy Giuliani’s once solid lead in nationwide polling of Republican voters has vanished. The latest nationwide survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press finds about equal levels of support for John McCain (22%), Rudy Giuliani (20%), and Mike Huckabee (17%). […]