Featured ReportNovember 17, 2011

Obama Job Approval Improves, GOP Contest Remains Fluid

With much of the recent political focus on the ever-changing Republican presidential nomination race, Barack Obama’s job rating has improved modestly over the past month. And a majority of Americans continue to hold a favorable personal opinion of Obama. This is not the case for his main GOP rivals, whom he mostly bests in […]

Multi-section ReportsNovember 3, 2011

The Generation Gap and the 2012 Election

In the last four national elections, generational differences have mattered more than they have in decades. According to the exit polls, younger people have voted substantially more Democratic than other age groups in each election since 2004, while older voters have cast more ballots for Republican candidates in each election since 2006. The latest […]

Featured ReportOctober 18, 2011

Top One-Word Reaction to Cain Is a Number: 9-9-9

When Americans are asked to describe Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain in a single word, they most frequently offer a series of numbers: “9-9-9.” Cain’s tax proposal is mentioned more often than his background as a businessman. For Mitt Romney, the most frequently used single word is his religion – “Mormon.” And the most frequently […]

PublicationsOctober 17, 2011

A Third in GOP Have Seen a Presidential Debate

About a quarter of the public (27%) says they have watched one or more of the Republican presidential debates so far this year. Most debate watchers say the televised sessions have been helpful in learning about the candidates (61%) and a third (34%) say the debates have led them to change their minds about […]

PublicationsOctober 6, 2011

Obama Motivates Supporters, Opponents in Early 2012 Matchups

Barack Obama is a leading driver of voter preferences in possible 2012 matchups, among both his supporters and opponents. Currently, Obama is running a close race in hypothetical matchups against Mitt Romney and Rick Perry. Against both GOP candidates, most of Obama’s supporters view their vote as a vote for the president, while most […]

Pew Research/Washington Post SurveysAugust 10, 2011

Democrats Not Eager for an Obama Challenger

Despite speculation that the Democratic base has become increasingly disillusioned with Barack Obama, rank-and-file Democrats are not eager to see other candidates challenge him for their party’s nomination in 2012. Just 32% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents say they would like other Democrats to take on Obama for the nomination, while 59% say they would […]

Multi-section ReportsJune 2, 2011

Republican Candidates Stir Little Enthusiasm

The emerging Republican presidential field draws tepid ratings. Just a quarter of voters (25%) have an excellent or good impression of the possible GOP candidates, and a separate survey conducted jointly with The Washington Post finds that negative descriptions of the field far outnumber positive ones. Asked for a single word to describe the […]

Pew Research/Washington Post SurveysJune 1, 2011

Top Reaction to GOP Field – “Unimpressed”

Americans have decidedly negative reactions to the candidates running for the Republican presidential nomination. Asked for a single word to describe the GOP field, the top response is a variation on “unimpressed,” with 42 mentions. Overall, 44% offer negative words to describe the Republican candidates, 19% use neutral words and just 12% use positive words. […]

CommentaryFebruary 11, 2008

Young Voters in 2008 Presidential Primaries

A great deal of attention on Super Tuesday was focused on young voters, especially in the Democratic contests. Pew polling over the past few years has shown that young voters are trending Democratic and constitute an important constituency for the party. Currently, a clear majority of registered voters ages 18-29 say they are Democrats or […]

CommentaryFebruary 8, 2008

Patterns of Distinction

In terms of the numbers, Super Tuesday was as much a national election as it was the sum of individual contests in 24 states. While significant variations emerged in voting patterns from state to state, similarities outweighed differences. In both political parties, distinct patterns shaped the outcomes from coast to coast, and they provide some […]

CommentaryFebruary 1, 2008

A Look at the Numbers

So far, the 2008 primaries and caucuses have been anything but predictable – comebacks, fallbacks, not to mention surprised pollsters. But a closer look reveals some common themes that have emerged, despite a still-forming consensus about nominees. read the full article at nytimes.com

CommentaryJanuary 28, 2008

The South Carolina Democratic Primary in Black and White

The results in Saturday’s Democratic primary in South Carolina offer important evidence — if not yet answers — to three big questions in this campaign: Can Barack Obama solidify all segments of the black vote behind him? Can he be competitive among white voters, especially in the South? And can we trust pre-election polls in […]