Oct. 15, 2012

More Say There Is Solid Evidence of Global Warming

The percentage of Americans saying there is solid evidence of global warming has steadily increased over the past few years. Currently, 67% say there is solid evidence that the earth’s average temperature has been getting warmer over the past few decades, up four points since last year and 10 points since 2009. Similarly, an […]

Oct. 12, 2012

Deep Divisions over Debt Reduction Proposals

Public concern over the debt and deficit, already extensive, is only likely to increase as the so-called “fiscal cliff” approaches at the end of the year. Yet among a dozen specific options for reducing the debt and deficit, only two win majority approval from the public – raising taxes on annual incomes over $250,000 […]

Oct. 11, 2012

Broad Support for Photo ID Voting Requirements

Proposals to require voters to show photo identification before being allowed to vote draw overwhelming support. By 77% to 20%, voters favor a requirement that those voting be required to show photo ID. Opinion about this is little changed from six years ago, when 80% of voters supported voter photo ID requirements. Several states […]

Oct. 11, 2012

One-in-Ten ’Dual-Screened’ the Presidential Debate

The vast majority of Americans say they followed coverage of the first presidential debate between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama, including 56% who followed the debate live. Most of these real-time viewers watched on television, but 11% of live debate watchers were “dual screeners,” following coverage on a computer or mobile device at the […]

Oct. 10, 2012

Public Less Negative About Economic News

Americans are hearing less negative news about the nation’s economy than they were just a month ago, and perceptions of news about other economic sectors – notably, the job situation – have improved as well. Most Americans continue to hear a mix of good and bad news about the economy (62%), but the share […]

Oct. 10, 2012

Biden Viewed Unfavorably, Divided Opinions about Ryan

Ahead of Thursday’s vice presidential debate, more voters view Joe Biden unfavorably than favorably, while opinions about Paul Ryan are more evenly divided. Biden’s image is far less positive than it was shortly before his 2008 debate with Sarah Palin; Ryan is viewed less favorably than Palin was just prior to the last vice-presidential […]

Oct. 8, 2012

Romney’s Strong Debate Performance Erases Obama’s Lead

2012 Election Voter Preference Trends Track voter preferences for Obama vs. Romney overall and by demographic group among registered voters. Mitt Romney no longer trails Barack Obama in the Pew Research Center’s presidential election polling. By about three-to-one, voters say Romney did a better job than Obama in the Oct. 3 debate, and the […]

Oct. 2, 2012

Obama Expected to Win First Presidential Debate

Heading into Wednesday night’s first presidential debate, voters expect that Barack Obama will do a better job than Mitt Romney. A substantial majority of voters plan to watch the debate: 62% say they are very likely to watch, another 21% say they are somewhat likely. The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center […]

Oct. 1, 2012

Romney’s ’47%’ Comments Criticized, But Many Also Say Overcovered

Mitt Romney’s statement that 47% of the public is dependent on government has registered strongly with voters. Fully two-thirds of voters (67%) correctly identify Romney as the candidate who made the comments. Among those aware that Romney made comments about the “47%”, more than half (55%) have a negative reaction while just 23% react […]

Sep. 27, 2012

In Changing News Landscape, Even Television is Vulnerable

The transformation of the nation’s news landscape has already taken a heavy toll on print news sources, particularly print newspapers. But there are now signs that television news – which so far has held onto its audience through the rise of the internet – also is increasingly vulnerable, as it may be losing its […]

Sep. 25, 2012

Pluralities Say Press is Fair to Romney, Obama

There is no public consensus when it comes to how the presidential candidates are being covered by the news media. Nearly half (46%) say the coverage of Romney has been fair, while among those who see a bias as many say the press has been too easy on the GOP nominee (20%) as too […]

Sep. 24, 2012

Fewer Satisfied with Candidates than in Any Campaign Since 1992

Approaching the first presidential debate, voters offer tepid ratings of the 2012 field. Just over half (54%) say they are either very or fairly satisfied with the presidential choices this year, while 40% say they are not too or not at all satisfied. The percentage expressing satisfaction with the candidates is now lower than it […]

Sep. 24, 2012

For Voters It’s Still the Economy

As Barack Obama and Mitt Romney prepare for their first debate on Oct. 3, the issues at the top of the voters’ agenda have changed little since 2008. Fully 87% of registered voters say that the economy will be very important to their vote, while 83% say jobs will be very important to their […]

Sep. 19, 2012

Obama Ahead with Stronger Support, Better Image and Lead on Most Issues

At this stage in the campaign, Barack Obama is in a strong position compared with past victorious presidential candidates. With an eight-point lead over Mitt Romney among likely voters, Obama holds a bigger September lead than the last three candidates who went on to win in November, including Obama four years ago.

Sep. 17, 2012

Middle East Turmoil Closely Followed; Romney’s Comments Viewed Negatively

About four-in-ten Americans (43%) have followed news about the attacks on U.S. embassies in the Middle East and the killing of an American ambassador very closely, making it by far the most closely followed foreign news story of the year. Those who have followed this story have much more positive opinions about Barack Obama’s […]

Sep. 12, 2012

Democrats Now More Positive on Campaign 2012

In the wake of the party conventions, Democrats express increasingly positive views of the presidential campaign. And today, substantially more Democrats than Republicans view the campaign as interesting and informative. The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted Sept. 7-9 among 1,012 adults, finds that 66% […]

Sep. 11, 2012

Record Partisan Gap in Views of Economic News

With the election less than two months away, partisan differences in views of economic news have become wider than ever. Despite this month’s lackluster jobs report, there has been a modest decline in the percentage of Americans saying news about the economy is mostly bad – with virtually all of the change coming among […]

Sep. 10, 2012

Democratic Convention Highlights: Clinton Outshines Obama

Like Mitt Romney, Barack Obama was not the highlight of his party’s convention. Among those who watched at least a little coverage of the Democratic convention, 29% say the highlight was Bill Clinton’s speech, while 16% name Obama’s speech as the highlight. About as many (15%) say that first lady Michelle Obama’s speech was […]

Sep. 5, 2012

Obama in a Word: From ‘Inexperienced’ and ‘Change’ to ‘Good’ and ‘Trying’

Four years ago, voters’ descriptions of Barack Obama focused on his newness on the political scene. In September 2008, more voters used the word inexperienced to describe Obama than any other word, while change was the most frequently used positive term. Words like young, charismatic and new were also among the top descriptions. Today, the […]

Sep. 5, 2012

Biden in a Word: ‘Good,’ ‘Idiot’

Asked for their one-word impression of Joe Biden, more people use negative than positive words to describe the vice president. Many of the negative words disparage Biden’s competence and performance, with idiot, incompetent and clown among the terms used most frequently. Of those offering a word to describe Biden, 38% use negative terms, while 23% […]