InteractivesOctober 24, 2012

Examining the Last Four Years

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Featured ReportSeptember 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 […]

Multi-section ReportsApril 17, 2012

With Voters Focused on Economy, Obama Lead Narrows

With voters continuing to focus on economic issues, Barack Obama holds a slim 49% to 45% advantage over Mitt Romney in the latest Pew Research Center survey of nearly 2,400 registered voters nationwide. Obama’s lead has narrowed since last month, when he had a 12-point advantage, though it is comparable to margins from earlier […]

Multi-section ReportsJanuary 23, 2012

Public Priorities: Deficit Rising, Terrorism Slipping

As the 2012 State of the Union approaches, the public continues to give the highest priority to economic issues. Fully 86% say that strengthening the economy should be a top priority for the president and Congress this year, and 82% rate improving the job situation as a top priority. None of the other 20 […]

Pew Research/Washington Post SurveysSeptember 29, 2011

No Consensus About Whether Nation Is Divided Into ’Haves’ and ’Have-Nots’

Despite an extended economic downturn, the public’s impression of whether the nation is economically divided remains relatively stable. While 45% say American society is divided between “haves” and “have-nots,” 52% say it is incorrect to think of the country this way. This is comparable to the balance of opinion a year ago. The percentage of […]

CommentaryFebruary 4, 2011

Historically, Public Has Given Low Priority to Promoting Democracy Overseas

Multi-section ReportsJanuary 20, 2011

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

Less Optimism about America’s Long-Term Prospects

2010 Congressional ConnectionJuly 12, 2010

Public’s Wish List for Congress – Jobs and Deficit Reduction

The public overwhelmingly views the job situation as a major priority for Congress during the coming months. Fully 80% say it is very important for Congress to pass legislation to address the job situation, which is virtually unchanged from May (81%). Somewhat fewer (70%) say it is very important for Congress to reduce the […]

2010 Congressional ConnectionMay 18, 2010

Public’s Priorities, Financial Regs

The public views tougher regulations on financial institutions as an important priority for Congress, but far more want Congress to take action on the job situation and energy policy. In thinking about financial regulation, as many say they worry that the government will go too far in regulating financial markets, making it harder for […]

PublicationsJanuary 25, 2010

Public’s Priorities for 2010: Economy, Jobs, Terrorism

Summary of Findings As Barack Obama begins his second year in office, the public’s priorities for the president and Congress remain much as they were one year ago. Strengthening the nation’s economy and improving the job situation continue to top the list. And, in the wake of the failed Christmas Day terrorist attack on a […]

Multi-section ReportsDecember 3, 2009

U.S. Seen as Less Important, China as More Powerful

The general public and members of the Council on Foreign Relations are apprehensive and uncertain about America’s place in the world. Growing numbers in both groups see the United States playing a less important role globally, while acknowledging the increasing stature of China. And the general public, which is in a decidedly inward-looking frame […]

CommentaryJune 24, 2009

Pollwatch: Comparing the Polls on Spending and the Deficit

PublicationsApril 8, 2009

Partisan Bickering Is Back, Says Public

Shortly before President Obama took office in January, the public was uncharacteristically optimistic that Republicans and Democrats would work together more to solve problems in the year ahead. Less than three months later, those expectations have faded and most see a return to partisan politics in Washington. A majority (53%) currently says that Republicans […]

PublicationsJanuary 22, 2009

Economy, Jobs Trump All Other Policy Priorities In 2009

As Barack Obama takes office, the public’s focus is overwhelmingly on domestic policy concerns – particularly the economy. Strengthening the nation’s economy and improving the job situation stand at the top of the public’s list of domestic priorities for 2009. Meanwhile, the priority placed on issues such as the environment, crime, illegal immigration and […]

Multi-section ReportsSeptember 24, 2008

Declining Public Support for Global Engagement

The public is feeling much better about how the war in Iraq is going these days, but at the same time has a sharply diminished appetite for U.S. efforts to deal with an array of global problems. Fewer people than at any point in this decade assign high priority to such foreign policy goals […]

Multi-section ReportsMay 29, 2008

McCain’s Negatives Mostly Political, Obama’s More Personal

As the end of the primary season draws near, Barack Obama is the clear favorite of Democratic voters for their party’s presidential nomination. He currently holds a wide 54% to 41% lead over Hillary Clinton. But when the Illinois Democrat is tested against John McCain in a general election matchup, he now runs about […]

PublicationsMay 8, 2008

A Deeper Partisan Divide Over Global Warming

Summary of Findings The proportion of Americans who say that the earth is getting warmer has decreased modestly since January 2007, mostly because of a decline among Republicans. Republicans are increasingly skeptical that there is solid evidence that the earth has been warming over the past few decades: just 49% of Republicans say there is […]

CommentaryJanuary 30, 2008

Global Warming Falls Still Farther on Republicans’ Policy Agenda

Republicans have long viewed the issue of global warming as a relatively unimportant issue. But this year, Republicans’ concerns about global warming have fallen through the floor. Just 12% of Republicans say that “dealing with global warming” should be a top priority for President Bush and Congress, making it by far their lowest-ranking issue. Read […]

PublicationsJanuary 24, 2008

An Even More Partisan Agenda for 2008

Summary of Findings With the economy slowing and the stock market reeling, there is greater agreement among Republicans and Democrats that strengthening the nation’s economy should be a top priority for the president and Congress in the coming year. By contrast, partisan differences over the importance of other domestic issues — such as dealing with […]

PublicationsNovember 27, 2007

Public Sees Progress in War Effort

Summary of Findings For the first time in a long time, nearly half of Americans express positive opinions about the situation in Iraq. A growing number says the U.S. war effort is going well, while greater percentages also believe the United States is making progress in reducing the number of Iraqi casualties, defeating the insurgents […]