Sep. 10, 1998

GOP Image Improves, But Congressional Race Remains Close

Introduction and Summary American voters divided their support for Republican and Democratic congressional candidates nearly equally in the weeks between President Clinton’s televised admission that he had an improper relationship with Monica Lewinsky and news of Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr’s report to Congress on the matter. But with two months to go until the midterm […]

Aug. 27, 1998

It’s Still the Economy They Say

Introduction and Summary Americans credit a strong economy and, to a lesser extent, a good foreign policy as reasons why they approve of the president’s job performance, even though they increasingly dislike Bill Clinton personally. Further, strong public criticism of the way he has handled the Monica Lewinsky matter has failed to shake Clinton’s approval […]

Aug. 13, 1998

Lewinsky Testimony – A Yawn

Summary of Findings Monica Lewinsky’s testimony in the investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct against Bill Clinton failed to spark any new interest in the scandal. Similarly, American attitudes toward the importance of the story or the merits of impeachment were unaffected by reports that she recanted her denial of a relationship with Clinton.

Aug. 7, 1998

Other Important Findings

China’s Image Though few Americans paid very close attention to President Clinton’s trip to China, significantly more Americans see China moving in the direction of democracy and capitalism today than did so before Clinton’s June visit. Fully 35% of the public thinks that China’s government is “becoming more democratic” and “allowing more freedoms”; only 26% […]

Aug. 4, 1998

Americans Unmoved by Prospect of Clinton, Lewinsky Testimony

Introduction and Summary Public interest in the White House sex scandal has not increased at all with the news that President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky will soon give grand jury testimony. Only 29% of Americans are following news of the controversy very closely, despite a torrent of media coverage. News interest is nearly identical to […]

Jun. 15, 1998

Other Important Findings

Political Interest Down from ’94 A sharp decline in the number of Americans tuned in to government and public affairs offers new evidence that the November election may not spark much interest. Indeed, just 9% of Americans are following news about candidates and elections in their states very closely. Interest in the elections is lackluster […]

Apr. 3, 1998

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Popular Today vs. Legacy Tomorrow The steady stream of allegations involving a White House sex scandal and cover-up has not eroded President Clinton’s popularity. And while the story continues to interest the public, it appears to have lost some of its resonance: The number of people saying Clinton should be impeached if he lied under […]

Apr. 3, 1998

Democratic Congressional Chances Helped by Clinton Ratings

Introduction and Summary President Clinton’s lofty performance ratings are benefiting the Democratic Party, which is now in a stronger position with American voters than it has been for some time. In contrast, continuing negative perceptions of Republican congressional leaders are hamstringing the image of their party. By the biggest margin of the decade, the public […]

Feb. 6, 1998

Popular Policies and Unpopular Press Lift Clinton Ratings

Introduction and Summary A strong State of the Union address combined with public anger at the news media fueled President Clinton’s unexpected lift to a 71% approval rating — even as allegations of a White House sex scandal consumed Washington. When asked in a Pew Research Center re-interview survey why they had changed their minds […]

Feb. 6, 1998

Other Important Findings and Analyses

State of the Nation: Bright Surpassing even Clinton’s hike in approval ratings in the past two weeks is a 13% point jump in satisfaction with the way “things are going in this country today.” Fully 59% of Americans now say they are satisfied with the country — the highest number since the end of the […]

Nov. 21, 1997

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Clinton and Congressional Ratings Unchanged President Clinton’s approval ratings remain high and Americans credit Congress for its accomplishments this year, despite the failure of campaign finance and “fast track” trade legislation in the weeks leading up to the congressional adjournment. Nearly one in four Americans say this Congress has accomplished more than other recent Congresses, […]

Aug. 15, 1997

When Washington Works, Incumbents Prosper

Introduction and Summary For the first time in a very long time, Americans are happy with the country’s course and it is beginning to pay dividends to the political establishment. Not only are Bill Clinton’s approval ratings approaching Reagan’s at a comparable point, but support for Congressional incumbents is at a decade high, and interest […]

May. 23, 1997

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Budget Agreement Clearly, Bill Clinton’s continued high ratings, despite Whitewater and the DNC fund raising scandal, seem more tied to a reduction in economic anxiety than to success with the budget. News interest in the budget debate once again edged down at the very time the President and Republican leaders had come to their historic […]

Feb. 28, 1997

Widespread Pessimism about Balanced Budget

Survey Findings Despite the new spirit of bipartisanship in Washington and the sense of optimism inside the beltway that a budget agreement may finally be at hand, the American public is extremely bearish about the prospects for a balanced budget. Just 28% believe President Clinton and the GOP Congressional leaders will be able to reach […]

Jan. 16, 1997

A Partisan Public Agenda

Introduction and Summary As Inauguration Day approaches, Bill Clinton is getting his highest ever approval rating (59%). Favorable opinion of Congress is also up sharply (56%) as the GOP begins its second consecutive term of control for the first time in more than sixty years. Newt Gingrich is the only unpopular national leader in the […]

Nov. 15, 1996

Other Important Findings and Analyses

But An Informed Decision The usefulness of the debates aside, voters did feel they were sufficiently informed to choose between candidates. Fully 75% of voters felt they had learned enough about the candidates to make “an informed choice” between Clinton, Dole and Perot, a level similar to that in 1992 (77%) and substantially higher than […]

Nov. 1, 1996

Dole Appeal Nearly Record Low

As the 1996 election campaign draws to an end, Bob Dole rates as one of the least appealing major party presidential candidates of almost four decades, according to an analysis of favorability ratings by Larry Hugick, director of political surveys at Princeton Survey Research Associates. He ranks 19th out of 20 candidates since 1960. Bill […]

Oct. 25, 1996

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Dole’s Image The respective campaign success and failure of Clinton and Dole with various constituencies emerges more clearly in the public’s assessment of each candidate’s personal character, attitudes and performance. In these measurements, Dole has lost ground or has not improved for the most part compared to seven months ago. For example, fewer voters now […]

Oct. 25, 1996

Clinton Unites Dems, Gains Working Class Independents

Introduction and Summary After two presidential debates and six weeks of the general campaign Bill Clinton’s lead over Bob Dole is as large as it was in early September. The course of the race has changed little with the passing of each important campaign milestone. The only observable consequence of the debates is that the […]

Oct. 4, 1996

Dole Can’t Cash In on Mixed View of Clinton

Introduction and Summary Bill Clinton continues to hold a commanding lead over Bob Dole and Ross Perot, but it is not because voters are delighted with his record, or because the electorate is euphoric about economic conditions, or because people expect better things to come. American voters are modest in their enthusiasm for Bill Clinton, […]