Survey Reports Feb. 17, 2011

Labor Unions Seen as Good for Workers, Not U.S. Competitiveness

The favorability ratings for labor unions remain at nearly their lowest level in a quarter century with 45% expressing a positive view. Yet the public expresses similar opinions about business corporations – 47% have a favorable impression – and this rating is also near a historic low. Americans express mixed views of the impact […]

Weekly News Interest Index Feb. 16, 2011

Interest in Egypt News Surges as Mubarak Departs

Summary of Findings The sudden conclusion to Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year reign in Egypt dominated both news coverage and the public’s news interest last week. Fully 48% say they followed news about Egyptian protests and Mubarak’s resignation more closely than any other story, far surpassing the week’s other stories. The news media devoted 39% of coverage […]

Survey Reports Feb. 15, 2011

Public Remains Divided Over the Patriot Act

Public views of the Patriot Act, whose renewal is being debated by Congress, have changed little since the Bush administration. Currently, 42% say the Patriot Act is a necessary tool that helps the government find terrorists, while somewhat fewer (34%) say the Patriot Act goes too far and poses a threat to civil liberties. […]

Commentary Feb. 11, 2011

Tea Party’s Hard Line on Spending Divides GOP

Survey Reports Feb. 10, 2011

Fewer Want Spending to Grow, But Most Cuts Remain Unpopular

The public’s views about federal spending are beginning to change. Across a range of federal programs, Americans are no longer calling for increased spending, as they have for many years. For the most part, however, there is not a great deal of support for cutting spending, though in a few cases support for reductions has […]

Weekly News Interest Index Feb. 9, 2011

Public Now More Focused on Egypt, but Coverage Far Surpasses Interest

Summary of Findings The public’s interest in news about the massive anti-government protests in Egypt surged last week, but did not keep pace with the growth in media coverage. About a third (32%) of the public says they followed news about the protests in Egypt very closely last week. That’s nearly double the 17% that […]

Survey Reports Feb. 8, 2011

No Consensus on How Egypt Protests Will Affect U.S.

Americans do not have a clear point of view on how the massive anti-government protests in Egypt will affect the United States. More than half (58%) say the protests will not have much of an effect (36%), or offer no response or are noncommittal (22%). Of the minority that thinks the protests will have […]

Commentary Feb. 4, 2011

Historically, Public Has Given Low Priority to Promoting Democracy Overseas

Weekly News Interest Index Feb. 1, 2011

Limited Public Interest in Egyptian Protests

Summary of Findings So far, the extraordinary anti-government protests in Egypt have drawn much more attention from the news media than from the American public. Only about one-in-ten (11%) cite news about protests in Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries as the story they followed most closely last week. By contrast, more than three times […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 26, 2011

Tucson Rampage Still Top Story for Public

Summary of Findings The public continued to show strong interest last week in news about the shooting rampage in Tucson, Ariz., though the story did not dominate media coverage as it had one week earlier. More than four-in-ten Americans (44%) say they followed news about the aftermath of the Jan. 8 shootings more closely than […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 24, 2011

Most Intend to Watch Obama’s State of the Union

Summary of Findings Most Americans say they plan to watch President Obama’s State of the Union address Tuesday night. Still, a sizable majority sees the speech to Congress as no more important than in previous years. In the latest survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted Jan. 20-23 among […]

Survey Reports Jan. 20, 2011

Economy Dominates Public’s Agenda, Dims Hopes for the Future

Less Optimism about America’s Long-Term Prospects

Survey Reports Jan. 19, 2011

No Shift Toward Gun Control After Tucson Shootings

Most Point to Troubled Individuals, Not Broader Societal Problems

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 18, 2011

Arizona Rampage Dominates Public’s News Interest

Bipartisan Praise for Obama Memorial Speech

Commentary Jan. 13, 2011

Views of Gun Control — A Detailed Demographic Breakdown

Commentary Jan. 13, 2011

Friend or Foe? How Americans See China

Survey Reports Jan. 13, 2011

Obama’s Job Ratings, Personal Image Unchanged by Recent Washington Events

Neither the trouncing of the Democratic Party in the midterm elections nor the surprising legislative accomplishments of the “lame duck” Congress has had a measurable effect on opinions of Barack Obama.

Survey Reports Jan. 12, 2011

Strengthen Ties with China, But Get Tough on Trade

As President Obama prepares to host Chinese President Hu Jintao next week, Americans increasingly see Asia as the region of the world that is most important to the United States. Nearly half (47%) say Asia is most important, compared with just 37% who say Europe, home to many of America’s closest traditional allies. Views […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 12, 2011

Economic News Seen as Less Negative

Summary of Findings Though the new Congress convened in Washington last week, Americans focused most closely on news about the nation’s economy – until they heard about Saturday’s shooting rampage in Tucson, Ariz., that left six dead and a congresswoman fighting for her life. At that point, the shootings became the public’s top story. Before […]

Weekly News Interest Index Jan. 11, 2011

Press Coverage and Public Interest: Matches and Mismatches