Jun. 21, 2010

Public Uncertain About How to Improve Job Situation

There is broad public agreement that past government policies intended to address the financial crisis and recession have not worked. At the same time, there is very little agreement about what the government should do now to deal with the nation’s biggest economic concern – the job situation. None of the options currently under […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jun. 16, 2010

Public Sees No Improvement in Economic News

Summary of Findings News about the economy has been overshadowed by the Gulf oil leak in recent weeks. And in the public’s view, the economic news has not improved. Currently, 65% say they are hearing a mix of good and bad news about the economy, while 30% say they are hearing mostly bad news and […]

Jun. 14, 2010

Public Remains of Two Minds on Energy Policy

With the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico now nearly two months old, the public is sending mixed signals about U.S. energy policy. Despite the growing damage from the Gulf oil leak, the public generally favors continuing to drill for oil and gas in U.S. waters. And in setting priorities for energy legislation […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jun. 9, 2010

News Media Trusted For Information On Oil Leak

Summary of Findings The public expresses far more trust in the news media for information about the Gulf oil leak than it does in either the federal government or BP. Fully 67% say they have a lot (20%) or some trust (47%) in information on the oil leak coming from news organizations. That compares with […]

Jun. 7, 2010

Doubts About Obama’s Economic Policies Rise

The public increasingly sees Barack Obama’s policies as having an impact on economic conditions and, for the first time, slightly more say the impact has been negative rather than positive. About three-in-ten (29%) say Obama’s economic policies since taking office have made economic conditions worse; 23% say his policies have made conditions better. Nearly […]

Commentary Jun. 3, 2010

Seniors are Strongest Advocates for Change in 2010

Weekly News Interest Index Jun. 3, 2010

Interest In Oil Spill Stays High As Coverage Grows

Summary of Findings As efforts to stop a major underwater oil leak faltered and President Obama traveled to Louisiana to assess the early damage, the crisis in the Gulf of Mexico grabbed public attention and dominated media coverage last week. More than half of Americans (55%) say they followed news about the oil leak very […]

Weekly News Interest Index May. 26, 2010

Public, Media Track Oil Spill, Diverge On Elections

Summary of Findings Americans stayed focused on the unfolding oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico last week, while the effort to cap the underwater well and limit the damage was one of two stories that dominated media coverage. The media devoted comparable levels of coverage to the spill and news about last week’s primaries […]

May. 24, 2010

Willingness to Compromise a Plus in Midterms

Many Americans say they will look less favorably this fall at congressional candidates who supported the federal bailout of major banks and financial institutions in response to the 2008 financial crisis. About half (49%) say they are less likely to vote for a candidate who supported the major government loans to banks; 14% say […]

Commentary, Methodology Reports May. 20, 2010

Assessing the Cell Phone Challenge

Weekly News Interest Index May. 19, 2010

Gulf Oil Leak Dominates Public’s News Interests

Summary of Findings As oil from an undersea well continued to flow into the Gulf of Mexico last week, Americans tracked the worsening environmental disaster much more closely than any other major news story. About half (49%) say this was the story they followed most closely. Press coverage was divided between the oil leak (17% […]

May. 18, 2010

Public’s Priorities, Financial Regs

The public views tougher regulations on financial institutions as an important priority for Congress, but far more want Congress to take action on the job situation and energy policy. In thinking about financial regulation, as many say they worry that the government will go too far in regulating financial markets, making it harder for […]

Weekly News Interest Index May. 12, 2010

Public Tracks Oil Spill, Media Focuses More On Times Square

Summary of Findings Americans tracked the worsening oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico more closely than other major news stories last week, while the media focused on both the underwater oil leak and the investigation into the attempted car bombing in New York’s Times Square. A third of the public (33%) says they most […]

Survey Reports May. 12, 2010

Broad Approval For New Arizona Immigration Law

The public broadly supports a new Arizona law aimed at dealing with illegal immigration and the law’s provisions giving police increased powers to stop and detain people who are suspected of being in the country illegally. Fully 73% say they approve of requiring people to produce documents verifying their legal status if police ask […]

Survey Reports May. 11, 2010

Oil Spill Seen As Ecological Disaster; Government, BP Responses Faulted

A majority of Americans see the massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico as a major environmental disaster, but nearly as many voice optimism that efforts to control the spill will succeed. The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted May 6-9 among 994 adults, […]

Weekly News Interest Index May. 5, 2010

Gulf Coast Oil Spill Grabs Public Attention

Summary of Findings As a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico spread toward the Louisiana coastline last week, the public focused on the unfolding story of a potential environmental disaster. The spill dominated the public’s consciousness. It was the story people were most likely to say they talked about with friends. The percentage […]

Survey Reports May. 4, 2010

“Socialism” Not So Negative, “Capitalism” Not So Positive

“Socialism” is a negative for most Americans, but certainly not all Americans. “Capitalism” is regarded positively by a majority of the public, though it is a thin majority. There are certain segments of the public – notably, young people and Democrats – where both “isms” are rated about equally. And while most Americans have […]

Weekly News Interest Index Apr. 28, 2010

Economy, Volcanic Ash Top News Interest

Summary of Findings The public and the media focused on economic issues last week, with 24% of Americans saying they followed news about the economy more closely than other major stories. Another 9% say they followed news about proposals for stricter regulation of banks and financial institutions most closely. Americans also continued to closely track […]

Survey Reports Apr. 28, 2010

Pessimistic Public Doubts Effectiveness of Stimulus, TARP

The public remains doggedly downbeat about the condition of the national economy, even as many experts and economists see signs of recovery. As has been the case for most of the past two years, about nine-in-ten (88%) rate national economic conditions as only fair or poor, and over the past year there has been […]

Weekly News Interest Index Apr. 22, 2010

Health Care Still Top Story, But Many Track Volcano

Summary of Findings Americans say they followed news about the new health care law more closely than any other major story last week, but many also kept a close watch on the economy and the ash-spewing volcano in Iceland that disrupted international air travel. Though media coverage of the health care debate has dropped significantly […]