Dec. 16, 1999

Campaign Incidents Have Little Punch

Introduction and Summary The rhetoric and events of the presidential campaign so far are having little impact on the attitudes of voters nationwide. Voter preferences are being shaped more by general impressions of the candidates than by what they are saying or by what is happening to them along the campaign trail. While many Americans […]

Dec. 10, 1999

Independents Drive New Hampshire Poll Shifts

Also: The Civilian-Military Gap Flap

Nov. 11, 1999

Retro-Politics

Foreword and Overview Foreword In 1987, we embarked on an ambitious project to better understand the nature of American politics. We identified a broad range of beliefs and values that underlie common political labels and that ultimately drive political action. A voter typology emerged from this effort which classifies the electorate into distinct groupings, defined […]

Oct. 18, 1999

Candidate Qualities May Trump Issues in 2000

Introduction and Summary Even though Americans say that issues matter most, candidates’ personal qualities may be decisive in a campaign without dominant issues. Voters make fine distinctions, however, about what they want to know about candidates personally. Americans strongly reject press inquiry into most avenues of candidates’ private lives, yet at the same time place […]

Sep. 15, 1999

Too Much Money, Too Much Media Say Voters

Introduction and Summary Americans are showing signs of disaffection with a presidential campaign that is just beginning. The public thinks the press and large campaign contributors are having too much influence on who gets nominated, and a 60% majority thinks voters themselves have too little say. The latest Pew Research Center survey, conducted on the […]

Jul. 22, 1999

Third Party Chances Limited

Introduction and Summary The prospects for a third party presidential candidate appear dim. Americans are reasonably satisfied with the existing field of candidates for the 2000 presidential election, and overwhelming numbers say they would not consider voting for outsiders Jesse Ventura or Ross Perot. Three-in-four people say they would be satisfied with a contest between […]

Jun. 16, 1999

It’s Still Too Early for the Voters

Introduction and Summary The early presidential primary season may have front-loaded candidate announcements, political advertising and the media roadshow, but it’s all background noise to the average American voter. Nearly two-thirds of the public is paying little or no attention to the 2000 election, and knowledge of the presidential candidates and opinions about them are […]

May. 20, 1999

Bradley Boxes Out Political Center

Introduction and Summary Bill Bradley is the man in the middle when it comes to voter perceptions. Americans describe the former New Jersey senator as a political moderate far more frequently than they do any other presidential candidate. On average, voters who know Bradley rate his ideology as virtually identical to their own. But, despite […]

Mar. 4, 1999

Does an early lead in the polls usually hold up?

A stream of candidate announcements and polls showing Texas Governor George W. Bush leading Vice President Al Gore have spurred interest in the 2000 presidential contest. But with the nominating conventions still more than 16 months away, what do these early polls mean for would-be nominees? A look back at nearly 40 years of early […]

Feb. 25, 1999

Public Votes for Continuity and Change in 2000

Introduction and Summary The anomalies of American public opinion continue even as the impeachment trial fades into history. Today, the public view of the state of the nation is much improved, despite the fact that a major component of that view — trust in government — remains low. Politically, the public expresses negative views of […]

Jan. 14, 1999

The Internet News Audience Goes Ordinary

Introduction and Summary The Internet audience is not only growing, it is getting decidedly mainstream. Two years ago, when just 23% of Americans were going online, stories about technology were the top news draw. Today, with 41% of adults using the Internet, the weather is the most popular online news attraction. Increasingly people without college […]