Mar. 16, 2009

Section 1: Obama and the Economy

Nearly six-in-ten Americans (59%) approve of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president. About a month ago, 64% approved of his job performance. Obama’s disapproval ratings have grown significantly over this time; in early February, just 17% said they disapproved of the president’s handling of his job; today, 26% do so. The […]

Nov. 25, 2008

Winds of Political Change Haven’t Shifted Public’s Ideology Balance

Nov. 13, 2008

High Marks for the Campaign, a High Bar for Obama

A week after the election, voters are feeling good about themselves, the presidential campaign and Barack Obama. Looking ahead, they have high expectations for the Obama administration, with two-thirds predicting that he will have a successful first term. The quadrennial post-election survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press finds […]

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. […]

Jul. 10, 2008

Section 5: Candidate Race, Age, Experience and Religion

Potential Candidate Weaknesses Barack Obama’s relative inexperience in national politics is seen by more voters as having a negative effect on his candidacy than his race. Roughly four-in-ten voters (42%) say Obama will be hurt by the fact that he is new to national politics; just 22% believe he will be hurt by the fact […]

May. 1, 2008

Section 3: The General Election

While the dynamics of the Democratic primary contest continue to fluctuate, voter preferences in general election matchups between either Obama or Clinton and McCain remain stable. Among registered voters nationwide, Barack Obama holds a six-point edge over McCain (50% to 44%) while Clinton leads McCain by a comparable margin (49% to 45%). Neither race has […]

May. 1, 2008

Obama’s Image Slips, His Lead Over Clinton Disappears

Summary of Findings Democratic voters are not as positive about Barack Obama as they were a month ago. Somewhat smaller percentages of Democrats describe Obama in favorable terms, and he has lost his lead over Hillary Clinton in the race for the Democratic nomination. Nationally, Democratic voters are about evenly divided between Obama and Clinton; […]

Mar. 17, 2008

Section III: The State of Journalism and Views on Performance

Reporters, editors and executives at national news organizations have become considerably more pessimistic about the state of their profession since 2004. By roughly two-to-one (62%-32%), more national journalists say that journalism is going in the wrong direction rather than the right direction. In 2004, 51% said things were going in the wrong direction while 43% […]

Jan. 25, 2008

Raising McCain

Nearly lost in the blizzard of recent poll reports were the findings of a Gallup survey that the current Republican frontrunner, John McCain, might well give each of the two Democratic frontrunners a run for their money. When Gallup asked 1,598 likely voters whom they’d back if the presidential election were held today, respondents chose […]

Jan. 16, 2008

In GOP Primaries: Three Victors, Three Constituencies

Summary of Findings The Republican nomination contest is being increasingly shaped by ideology and religion as it moves toward the Super Tuesday states on Feb. 5. John McCain has moved out to a solid lead nationally, increasing his support among Republican and GOP-leaning voters from 22% in late December to 29% currently. Mike Huckabee, at […]

Oct. 31, 2007

Section 2: The General Election

While the Democratic Party maintains a substantial advantage over the GOP in party identification, Clinton holds a more modest 51%-43% lead over Giuliani among registered voters in an early general election test. Clinton runs particularly well among those demographic groups that typically vote Democratic by wide margins — minorities, the poor and less educated people. […]

Apr. 26, 2007

Both Sides Reject Compromise in Iraq Funding Fight

Summary of Findings With battle lines drawn over legislation funding the Iraq war, the public is showing little appetite for compromise. Overall, a solid majority of Americans (59%) continue to say they want their representative to support a bill calling for a U.S. troop withdrawal from Iraq by August 2008, while just a third want […]

Mar. 29, 2007

Democrats Fail to Impress in First 100 Days

Summary of Findings As the Democratic-led Congress approaches the 100-day mark, pluralities of Americans approve of the way that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are handling their leadership roles. However, the public gives Democrats mixed reviews for delivering on their campaign promises and for their policies and proposals. Slightly more […]

Mar. 22, 2007

Trends in Political Values and Core Attitudes: 1987-2007

Summary of Findings Increased public support for the social safety net, signs of growing public concern about income inequality, and a diminished appetite for assertive national security policies have improved the political landscape for the Democrats as the 2008 presidential campaign gets underway. At the same time, many of the key trends that nurtured the […]

Oct. 11, 2006

Growing Number of Liberal Democrats

The percent of Democratic voters who think of themselves as “liberals” has been slowly rising in recent years, while the number of conservative Democrats has declined. In polling conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press from January to September of 2006, 32% of Democrats describe themselves as ideologically liberal, while […]

Aug. 3, 2006

Pragmatic Americans Liberal and Conservative on Social Issues

Summary of Findings Americans cannot be easily characterized as conservative or liberal on today’s most pressing social questions. The public’s point of view varies from issue to issue. They are conservative in opposing gay marriage and gay adoption, liberal in favoring embryonic stem cell research and a little of both on abortion. Along with favoring […]

Jul. 30, 2006

Section 3: Attitudes Toward the News

A narrow majority of Americans say they enjoy keeping up with the news “a lot,” and this attitude is one of the strongest predictors of how much news people actually seek out. Enjoyment of the news has been very stable over the past dozen years. About one-third (34%) say they enjoy keeping up with the […]

Apr. 11, 2006

In Search of Ideologues in America

Many Americans do not fit well within into either the conservative or liberal camps. Instead they find a home in one of two other U.S. political traditions, libertarian and populist, or defy attempts to pigeon-hole them. Read full article at pewresearch.org

Jun. 15, 2005

Supreme Court’s Image Declines as Nomination Battle Looms

Summary of Findings With an aging Supreme Court possibly facing major changes, the court’s public image has eroded significantly. Currently, 57% of Americans have a favorable opinion of the Supreme Court, with 30% expressing an unfavorable view. In the past, favorable views of the court typically surpassed 70%; even in January 2001, shortly after the […]

Jun. 8, 2004

V. Media Credibility Declines

Credibility ratings for the major broadcast and cable television outlets have fallen somewhat in recent years, due in large part to increased cynicism toward the media on the part of Republicans and conservatives. CNN no longer enjoys the top spot as the most credible TV news source; it is now in a statistical tie with […]