Oct. 23, 2008

Section 4: First-Time Voters, Early Voters and Engagement

One-in-ten voters say that 2008 is the first year in which they will have voted. This includes 3% who say they voted for the first time this primary season, and another 7% who say the general election will be their first vote. This election cycle is the first time voting for nearly four-in-ten (38%) voters […]

Oct. 21, 2008

Section 3: Issues and Priorities

Obama Improves on Key Issues Barack Obama has improved his standing at least slightly since mid-September over John McCain on virtually every domestic and foreign policy issue. When voters were asked which candidate would do the best job handling various concerns, Obama boosted his advantage on domestic issues and cut into McCain’s lead elsewhere. For […]

Oct. 21, 2008

Growing Doubts About McCain’s Judgment, Age and Campaign Conduct

Barack Obama’s lead over John McCain has steadily increased since mid-September, when the race was essentially even. Shortly after the first presidential debate on Sept. 26, Obama moved to a 49% to 42% lead; that margin inched up to 50% to 40% in a poll taken just after the second debate. Currently, Obama enjoys […]

Oct. 21, 2008

Section 1: The Obama-McCain Matchup

Barack Obama leads John McCain not only in overall support but also in the intensity of his support. A sizable plurality of 45% says they are voting for Obama and that there is no chance they will vote for McCain. McCain’s “certain” support is much smaller: just 32% are certain to vote for him. Similarly, […]

Oct. 21, 2008

Section 2: Candidate Traits

The favorability ratings for both candidates on the GOP ticket have declined over the past month. By contrast, both Barack Obama and Joe Biden are now viewed more favorably than they were in mid-September. Currently, 54% of voters say they have a favorable opinion of McCain, while 42% have an unfavorable opinion. In mid-September (Sept. […]

Oct. 15, 2008

Public Not Desperate About Economy or Personal Finances

Americans are concerned about the nation’s economic problems almost to the exclusion of every other issue, and they register the lowest level of national satisfaction ever measured in a Pew Research Center survey. Just 11% say they are satisfied with the way things are going in the country – down 14 points in the […]

Oct. 15, 2008

Section 4: The Candidates and the Crisis

With two well-received debate performances behind him and the public focused on the economy, Barack Obama holds a solid 10-point lead (50% to 40%) over John McCain, one of his largest advantages in Pew polls this year. Among those most likely to vote on Nov. 4, Obama’s lead is seven points (49% to 42%). Just […]

Oct. 6, 2008

Post-Debate: Palin Still Seen as Unqualified, a Bump for Biden

While last week’s vice-presidential debate had a larger audience than any other in history, voters’ impressions of Sarah Palin have changed little. A special re-interview this weekend of voters who had been first polled a week ago found that most (55%) continue to have a favorable view of Palin, but most (52%) also still […]

Oct. 4, 2008

A Word about Debate Impressions

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 […]

Sep. 25, 2008

Uncertain Times

Sep. 25, 2008

The Candidates: In a Word

Sep. 23, 2008

Cell Phones and the 2008 Vote: An Update

Sep. 18, 2008

Section 1: The Obama-McCain Matchup

In spite of the huge television audiences for both political conventions and the strongly positive initial public reaction to the selection of Sarah Palin as the Republican vice presidential nominee, the electorate in September divides along most of the same demographic lines as it did prior to the conventions – and very much along the […]

Sep. 18, 2008

Section 2: Candidate Traits

Both McCain and Obama continue to be well regarded by voters on a number of personal traits. As was the case in April, majorities view both candidates as patriotic, honest and down-to-earth. However, there are major differences in how voters view each candidate. Far more regard McCain as patriotic (91%) than say this about Obama […]

Sep. 18, 2008

Section 3: The Vice-Presidential Candidates

Most voters express favorable views of both vice-presidential candidates, Sarah Palin and Joe Biden. Each candidate is viewed positively by a large majority of voters in their own party, but Palin has a much better image among independents. Six-in-ten independent voters say they have a favorable opinion of Palin compared with 47% who express a […]

Sep. 18, 2008

Section 4: Obama, McCain And The Issues

McCain has reduced Obama’s advantage on several major issues, including reducing the influence of lobbyists, dealing with the nation’s energy problems, and improving the nation’s economy. In addition, McCain has expanded his advantage as the candidate seen as best able to defend against terrorism, and now holds an 11-point lead as the candidate best able […]

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 […]

Sep. 11, 2008

The Bounce Effect

Aug. 25, 2008

Obama’s Challenge