Obama Job Rating Ticks Higher, Views of Nation’s Economy Turn More Positive
President Obama enters the seventh year of his presidency in a familiar position when compared with his recent predecessors. His 47% job approval rating places him squarely between George W. Bush (33%) and Bill Clinton (63%) at similar points in their second terms. Obama’s rating is comparable to Ronald Reagan’s in January 1987 (49%), when […]
Few See Quick Cure for Nation’s Political Divisions
Survey Report As 2014 draws to a close, the public is deeply pessimistic about the prospects for healing the nation’s deep political divisions. And most Americans think continued partisan gridlock would wreak significant damage on the country. To start, perceptions of the current level of political division continue at record levels: 81% say the country […]
Political Polarization in Action: Insights into the 2014 Election from the American Trends Panel
Survey Report The Pew Research Center has developed a new tool for looking at the 2014 elections – a panel survey that enables us to check in with the same representative group of Americans several times during the course of the campaign. This survey includes far more information about respondents than is found in a […]
Neither Party Gets Good Marks from Its Base for Handling Illegal Immigration
Survey Report As the current session of Congress comes to a close without significant action to address illegal immigration, neither Republicans nor Democrats are especially happy with the way their respective parties have dealt with the issue. Just 37% of Republicans and Republican leaners think the GOP is doing a good job representing their views […]
Wide Partisan Differences Over the Issues That Matter in 2014
Republican and Democratic voters are split not only over their candidate preferences, but also about the importance of key issues in the election.
Republicans Open Up Wider ‘Expectations Gap’ Ahead of Midterms
Survey Report With just over two months before the midterm elections, Republican voters are widening the “expectations gap” with the Democrats. About six-in-ten (61%) Republican and GOP-leaning registered voters think their party will do better than in recent elections — roughly double the share of Democrats (32%) who feel similarly about their party’s chances. This […]
Stark Racial Divisions in Reactions to Ferguson Police Shooting
Blacks and whites have sharply different reactions to the police shooting of an unarmed teen in Ferguson, Mo., and the protests and violence that followed. Blacks are about twice as likely as whites to say that the shooting of Michael Brown “raises important issues about race that need to be discussed.” Wide racial differences also […]
Beyond Red vs. Blue: The Political Typology
Our latest political typology sorts voters into cohesive groups based on their attitudes and values and provides a field guide for the constantly changing political landscape.
Political Polarization in the American Public
Republicans and Democrats are more divided along ideological lines – and partisan acrimony is deeper and more extensive – than at any point in recent history. And these trends manifest themselves in myriad ways, both in politics and in everyday life.
Deficit Reduction Declines as Policy Priority
Survey Report For the first time since Barack Obama took office in 2009, deficit reduction has slipped as a policy priority among the public. Overall, 63% say reducing the budget deficit should be a top priority for Congress and the president this year, down from 72% a year ago. Most of the decline has come […]
Republicans More Optimistic than Democrats about Midterms
Less than a year out from the 2014 midterm elections, Republicans are more optimistic than Democrats about their party’s electoral prospects. But the “expectations gap” is far more modest now than it was prior to the 2010 election, when Republicans were brimming with confidence, or 2006, when most Democrats anticipated a midterm victory.
GOP Deeply Divided Over Climate Change
Two-thirds of Americans (67%) say there is solid evidence that the earth has been getting warmer over the last few decades. Republicans, however, face greater internal divisions over this issue than do Democrats. Just 25% of Tea Party Republicans say there is solid evidence of global warming, compared with 61% of non-Tea Party Republicans.
Tea Party’s Image Turns More Negative
Survey Report The Tea Party is less popular than ever, with even many Republicans now viewing the movement negatively. Overall, nearly half of the public (49%) has an unfavorable opinion of the Tea Party, while 30% have a favorable opinion. The balance of opinion toward the Tea Party has turned more negative since June, when […]
As Debt Limit Deadline Nears, Concern Ticks Up But Skepticism Persists
Survey Report With just two days to go before an Oct. 17 deadline to raise the nation’s debt limit, 51% of the public views a rise in the nation’s debt limit as “absolutely essential” in order to avoid an economic crisis, while 36% think the country can go past the deadline without major problems. Public […]
Blame for Both Sides as Possible Government Shutdown Approaches
If the federal government shuts down because Republicans and the Obama administration fail to agree on a budget, there will be plenty of blame to go around. About as many say they would blame the Republicans (39%) for such a standoff as say they would blame Obama (36%), with 17% volunteering that both would […]
Tea Party Increasingly Unhappy with GOP Leadership
As lawmakers return for what promises to be a busy fall session, GOP congressional leaders face mounting disapproval among Tea Party Republicans. Just 27% of Republicans and GOP leaners who agree with the Tea Party approve of the job Republican leaders in Congress are doing, compared with 71% who disapprove. The job rating of […]
Whither the GOP? Republicans Want Change, But Split over Party’s Direction
Coming off of two consecutive presidential election defeats, most Republican voters believe that their party must address major problems to be more competitive in the future. And roughly six-in-ten say improved messaging alone will not be enough – the GOP also needs to reconsider some of its positions. Yet while Republicans may agree on […]
Obama Maintains Approval Advantage, but GOP Runs Even on Key Issues
President Obama continues to hold a substantial advantage over congressional Republicans in public regard. Obama’s job approval is back in positive territory at 51%, after slipping to 47% in March. By comparison, just 22% approve of the job Republican leaders in Congress are doing, among the lowest approval rating for congressional leaders from either […]
State Governments Viewed Favorably as Federal Rating Hits New Low
Even as public views of the federal government in Washington have fallen to another new low, the public continues to see their state and local governments in a favorable light. Overall, 63% say they have a favorable opinion of their local government, virtually unchanged over recent years. And 57% express a favorable view of […]
GOP Seen as Principled, But Out of Touch and Too Extreme
At a time when the Republican Party’s image is at a historic low, 62% of the public says the GOP is out of touch with the American people, 56% think it is not open to change and 52% say the party is too extreme. Opinions about the Democratic Party are mixed, but the party […]