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Gallup 12/31/2009
Revisiting the most defining findings of 2009
... January: George W. Bush ends his presidency with an average approval rating of 49%, earning a 34% approval rating in his last official measure. . . .

Washington Post 12/30
Republicans see political opportunity
Republicans are jumping on President Obama's response to the attempted Christmas Day bombing of a U.S. airliner as the latest evidence that Democrats do not aggressively fight terrorism to protect the country, returning to a campaign theme that the GOP has employed successfully over the past decade. . . .

Gallup: Frank Newport 12/30
Top 10 Intriguing Poll Findings of the Year
As the year (and the decade) winds down, I have created a Top 10 list. Not surprisingly, the list focuses on intriguing findings of the year relating to public opinion. . . .

USA Today 12/30
Americans most admire Obama, Clinton, Palin
President Obama is the man Americans admired most in 2009, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds, while Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin are virtually tied as the most-admired woman. . . .

ABC News 12/29
Consumer Confidence 2009: Worst Year on Record
Consumer confidence plowed through its worst year in 24 years of weekly polls, weighted down by abysmal ratings of the national economy. . . .

Gallup 12/28
"Political Winners" Circle
In Americans' estimation, the top three political winners of 2009 are all women closely linked with the Obama administration: Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Sonia Sotomayor. . . .

Gallup 12/23
The Decade in Review: Four Key Trends
As 2009 draws down, Gallup reviews four of the key trends that reveal how Americans reacted to the twists and turns experienced in public affairs and the economy over the past decade. . . .

ABC News 12/22
What We Want for Christmas
It's the little things people would like to have for the holidays this year: a job, peace on Earth, parole for the old man. Or, let's say, $20 million. . . .

Mark Mellman (pdf) 12/22
Healthcare Reform
Voters support the content of healthcare reform, while expressing opposition to a "content-less" plan identified with Congress. The individual elements of the legislation are very popular, as is the bill in total, when it is explained. Moreover, the public continues to trust Democrats and the President over Republicans to deal with the issue. . . .

Pew Research 12/21
Current Decade Rates as Worst in 50 Years
As the current decade draws to a close, relatively few Americans have positive things to say about it. By roughly two-to-one, more say they have a generally negative (50%) rather than a generally positive (27%) impression of the past 10 years. . . .

Washington Post 12/21
The big barometer
A new voter analysis of every midterm election from 1978 through 2006 suggests that the single most important number in determining how many House seats will be won or lost by the party in power is the president's job-approval score in the months leading up to the election. . . .

John Russonello 12/20
Spare the religiosity, it is political ideology that matters
A good rule to follow when interpreting election results and voter sentiments is to ignore explanations that rely on references to religion or God. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation 12/18
Kaiser Health Tracking Poll
The December Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds a dip on several measures of public opinion on health care reform. . . .

Washington Post 12/18
On environment, Obama and scientists take hit in poll
As President Obama arrives in Copenhagen hoping to seal an elusive deal on climate change, his approval rating on dealing with global warming has crumbled at home and there is broad opposition to spending taxpayer money to encourage developing nations to curtail their energy use, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Andrew Kohut 12/17
Obama's 2010 Challenge
As with most presidents at the end of their first year in office, Barack Obama's approval ratings have slipped in 2009, though not as much as the clamor of his critics would suggest. He is almost exactly where Ronald Reagan was at the end of 1981, when he too was struggling with the bad economy he had inherited. . . .

David S. Yeager & Jon A. Krosnick 12/17
Were the Benchmarks Really Wrong?
In a recently posted essay, Humphrey Taylor of Harris Interactive offered a surprising interpretation of data we reported in a recent paper (Yeager et al., 2009). Our paper compared the accuracy of an RDD telephone survey with various surveys done via the Internet. . . .

ABC News 12/17
Glimmers of Recovery, Yet Economic Gloom Stays Deep
There's a slight glimmer of light in public views of the economy: Half of Americans say it's begun to recover. But negatives aplenty threaten to douse that candle. . . .

Pew Research Center 12/16
Mixed Views of Obama at Year's End
Public opinion about President Barack Obama and his major polices continues to be divided as the year comes to a close. . . .

NCHS 12/16
Wireless Substitution
Preliminary results from the January-June 2009 National Health Interview Survey indicate that the number of American homes with only wireless telephones continues to grow. . . .

Gallup 12/16
Majority of Americans Still Not Backing Healthcare Bill
As the U.S. Senate continues working to craft a filibuster-proof healthcare reform bill, a new USA Today/Gallup poll finds public support for such efforts still below the majority level. . . .

David Hill 12/16
Mulling the Muhlenberg message
... [T]his little study examines why Republicans in Pennsylvania have left the party to re-register as Democrats. It provides a descriptive demographic profile of the party-switchers and considers the likelihood that they will return home to the GOP. . . .

Mark Mellman 12/16
Revisiting the G-d gap
In the euphoria following victories in '06 and '08, Democrats' concern about the G-d gap receded. Unfortunately, the gap itself has not. Despite our current economic crisis, cultural politics remains firmly entrenched. . . .

Washington Post 12/15
Public cool to health-care reform
As the Senate struggles to meet a self-imposed, year-end deadline to complete work on legislation to overhaul the nation's health-care system, a new Washington Post-ABC News poll finds the public generally fearful that a revamped system would bring higher costs while worsening the quality of their care. . . .

Resurgent Republic 12/15
Independents Age 55 and Older Prefer GOP Positions
Voters 55 and older are now extremely concerned about the federal government's current level of spending and debt. Since Resurgent Republic's first survey in April, we have been noting the extent to which budgetary and fiscal issues have been driving Independents away from Democrats and toward Republicans. . . .

New York Times 12/15
Poll Reveals Depth and Trauma of Joblessness
Joblessness has wreaked financial and emotional havoc on the lives of many of those out of work, according to a New York Times/CBS News poll of unemployed adults, causing major life changes, mental health issues and trouble maintaining even basic necessities. . . .

Resurgent Republic 12/11
Older Voters Strongly Reject Dems' Health Care Reform
With their health care reform proposals, Democrats in Congress are digging an enormous political hole with voters age 55 and older, a demographic group that plays an outsized role in non-presidential year elections. . . .

Gallup 12/11
Religious Intensity Powerful Predictor of Politics
... A new analysis of more than 29,000 interviews Gallup conducted in November finds that Republicans outnumber Democrats by 12 percentage points among Americans who are classified as highly religious, while Democrats outnumber Republicans by 30 points among those who are not religious. . . .

Pew Hispanic Center (pdf) 12/11
How Young Latinos Come of Age in America
Hispanics are the largest and youngest minority group in the United States. ... By force of numbers alone, the kinds of adults these young Latinos become will help shape the kind of society America becomes in the 21st century. . . .

Pew Research Center 12/9
Many Americans Mix Multiple Faiths
The religious beliefs and practices of Americans do not fit neatly into conventional categories. A new poll by the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion & Public Life finds that large numbers of Americans engage in multiple religious practices, mixing elements of diverse traditions. . . .

Mark Mellman 12/9
Obama leads a surge -- and the country
... The president’s room for political maneuver is on vivid display in the polls taken after his speech last week in which he outlined his rationale for sending an additional 30,000 troops to Afghanistan. . . .

David Hill 12/9
Tea Party poll results may mislead
... Just when the consensus seemed to be emerging among Tea Partyers that the movement is just that, a movement, provocateur Scott Rasmussen gratuitously and self-servingly stirred the pot by asking a generic congressional ballot question about a hypothetical situation in which Tea Party nominees run in three-way races against Republicans and Democrats. . . .

Gallup 12/9
Honesty, Ethics Poll Finds Congress' Image Tarnished
For the first time in Gallup's annual Honesty and Ethics of Professions poll, a majority of Americans -- 55% -- say the honesty and ethical standards of "members of Congress" are low or very low. ... By contrast, 83% of Americans say nurses have either very high or high ethical standards. . . .

ABC News: Gary Langer 12/7
The Price of Better Polling
Life can get complicated in survey research, and here's a prime example: On the way to better sampling in random-digit-dialed telephone surveys, the theoretical margin of error has, of all things, increased. . . .

Gallup 12/7
Top-Emitting Countries Differ on Climate Change Threat
Together, China, the United States, India, Russia, and Japan account for more than half of the world's greenhouse gas emissions. ... Public opinion about climate change across this mix of developed and major developing economies reveals some remarkable similarities and differences, both in awareness and in the perceived level of threat that global warming poses. . . .

BBC 12/7
Climate change poll shows rising concerns
Concern is rising about climate change around the world, according to a poll by GlobeScan for the BBC. Nearly two-thirds of 24,071 people polled in 23 countries said climate change was a "very serious" problem - up from 44% in a GlobeScan 1998 poll. . . .

New York Times 12/5
It's Just a Texas-Governor Thing
... The Texas Republican gubernatorial primary is thus shaping up to be a public airing of that national party's internal discontents. ... [T]he contest's central question -- whether a highly popular general-election Republican (Hutchison) can defeat a less-popular Republican (Perry) who nonetheless knows how to excite conservative primary voters -- goes to the heart of the party's overall vitality. . . .

Charlie Cook 12/5
Putting Faces On Attitudes
... Last Monday night I got to see Democratic pollster Peter Hart home in on the attitudes of 11 voters for the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg Public Policy Center. ... The president's partisans can take comfort from the fact that his supporters have not abandoned him even after 10 months of a tough recession; but Democratic strategists should be quite worried because the warm and fuzzy, hopeful and admiring sentiments expressed about Obama do not extend to Democrats in Congress. . . .

USA Today 12/3
Narrow majority support Obama's Afghan strategy
A narrow majority of Americans support President Obama's revamped strategy on Afghanistan, according to a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken Wednesday, but there are broad concerns that the costs of the war will sap the government's ability to address problems facing the nation at home. . . .

Pew Research Center 12/3
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. . . .

World Bank 12/3
Climate Change: Findings from a Multi-Country Poll
A new poll of 15 nations, most of them in the developing world, finds that majorities of the people canvassed want their governments to take steps to fight climate change, even if that entails costs. . . .

ABC News: Gary Langer 12/3
Understanding Answers
Pollsters spend a lot of time thinking about what to ask people. It's at least as important for us to think about how to understand their answers. Here's a suggestion in that direction: In literalism, at least in some data analysis, there's considerably more vice than virtue. . . .

Reuters 12/3
Most in U.S. want public health option
Most Americans would like to see a "public option" in health insurance reform but doubt anything Congress does will lower costs or improve care in the short term, according to a poll released on Thursday. . . .

Institute of Politics, Harvard University (pdf) 12/3
Young Americans' Attitudes Toward Politics
One year and a few weeks after young Americans aged 18 to 29 voted 66 percent to 32 percent to elect Barack Obama the 44th President of the United States, the President has an overall approval rating of 58 percent among this segment of the electorate (compared to 54 percent among all Americans 18+). . . .

Medill Reports 12/3
How to make sense of stories about polls
... Can one poll offer perspective on a topic as complex and controversial as abortion? Maybe, maybe not, according to Peter V. Miller, president of the American Association for Public Opinion Research. . . .

Mark Mellman 12/2
Democrats' dilemmas on reform
Moderate and conservative Democrats may feel trapped in a political vise by the healthcare debate. Whatever their own views, the Republicans and conservatives who populate their states and districts are more likely than others to oppose whatever plan emerges. . . .

Pew Research Center 12/1
GOP Seen as Friendlier to Religion than Democrats
More Americans continue to view the Republican Party as friendly toward religion (48%) than rate the Democratic Party that way (29%). President Barack Obama's administration, however, is seen as friendly toward religion by more people (37%) than the Democratic Party as a whole. . . .

ABC News: Gary Langer 12/1
Over Obama's Shoulder, Wartime Presidents Past
If there's a shadow over the proceedings as Barack Obama addresses the nation on his plans for Afghanistan tonight, it may be the ghosts of wartime presidents past. . . .

Washington Post 11/30
A party both united and divided
The Republican rank and file is largely in sync with GOP lawmakers in their staunch opposition to efforts by President Obama and Democrats to enact major health-care legislation, but a new Washington Post poll also reveals deep dissatisfaction among GOP voters with the party's leadership as well as ideological and generational differences that may prove big obstacles to the party's plans for reclaiming power. . . .

Democracy Corps 11/30
Job Creation Now, Deficit Reduction in Future
With unemployment now above 10% and still rising, a new survey by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research and Democracy Corps reveals a country more pessimistic than at any point since the earliest days of the Obama presidency. . . .

New York Times 11/30
Unemployment and Midterms
If they crave comfort, Democratic candidates can grab onto this: political science research finds little historical connection between unemployment and midterm Congressional elections. . . .

La Opinión 11/30
Obama still extremely popular among Latinos
President Barack Obama continues to be extremely popular among Latino voters nationwide and receives particularly strong backing from naturalized citizens, according to a new poll by Impremedia, Latino Decisions and the University of New Mexico's Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. . . .

Ross Douthat 11/30
A Generation in the Balance
Do downturns create Democrats? The Great Depression certainly did: The generation that came of age in the 1930s has cleaved to the Democratic Party like no population before or since. . . .

Des Moines Register 11/30
Iowa leans conservative, offering potential for GOP
More Iowans consider themselves to be conservatives than moderates or liberals, offering the state's Republican Party a potentially large pool of converts as it struggles to win back voters, according to a new Iowa Poll. . . .

Washington Post 11/25
Fewer Americans believe in global warming
The percentage of Americans who believe global warming is happening has dipped from 80% to 72% in the past year, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, even as a majority still support a national cap on greenhouse gas emissions. . . .

Pew Research Center: Scott Keeter 11/25
Where the Public Stands on Immigration Reform
Recently the Obama administration announced that it will push for legislation next year to overhaul the nation's immigration system. ... How is the public likely to react to this new push? ...

Pew Research Center: Jodie T. Allen 11/25
Polling Wars: Hawks vs. Doves
Though most Americans are not ready to cut and run, an increasing number are having second thoughts about U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation (pdf) 11/24
Public Opinion on Health Care Issues
As we head toward the holiday season, there is little movement in Kaiser's health reform tracking measures – either in favor or against reform proposals – despite the intense negotiations taking place on Capitol Hill. . . .

Media Matters 11/24
Palin almost as popular as Obama!
Los Angeles Times' Andrew Malcolm tries a nifty little sleight-of-hand in his November 23 blog post titled "Sarah Palin v. Barack Obama: The approval gap silently shrinks to a few points" and gets rewarded by Drudge for it. Problem is, it's not even close to true. . . .

New York Times 11/23
An Unsurprising Slide for Obama
President Obama returned from his trip to Asia facing some unsettling news: two new public-opinion polls showing that his approval rating has dipped below 50% for the first time. . . .

New York Times 11/22
Republicans Eye the Tiger of Populism
... Whatever else it said about America, [Sarah Palin's] return brought into focus a big question for Republicans as they watched the intense reactions she generated: To what extent should they try to energize their electoral prospects by hitching themselves to the powerful but volatile strain of populism — characterized by anti-elitism and deep skepticism of government — that Ms. Palin has come to embody? . . .

ABC News 11/22
Layoffs Take Heavy Emotional Toll
... Three in 10 Americans in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll say they or someone in their household has lost a job in the past year -- a new high. And the impacts can be devastating: Beyond financial hardship, large numbers report anger, stress and depression as a result. . . .

New York Times 11/21
Whose Recession Is It, Anyway?
President Obama might not like the answer to that question, at least according to CNN: "Nearly two years into the recession, opinion about which political party is responsible for the severe economic downturn is shifting, according to a new national poll. . . ."

Gallup 11/20
Obama Job Approval Down to 49%
The latest Gallup Daily tracking results show 49% of Americans approving of the job Barack Obama is doing as president, putting him below the majority approval level for the first time in his presidency. . . .

A. Gelman, N, Silver, D. Lee 11/19
The Senate's Health Care Calculations
Critics of the health care reform plan often refer to it derisively as "ObamaCare." ... [W]hen it comes to politics, "ObamaCare" could hardly be more apt: lawmakers' support for or opposition to reform generally has less to do with the views of their constituents and more to do with the issue of presidential popularity. . . .

Pew Research Center 11/18
Modest Rise in Concern About Islamic Extremism
The public continues to express concern about the rise of Islamic extremism in the United States and abroad, but a survey taken shortly after the deadly Nov. 5 shootings at the Fort Hood Army base shows only a modest increase in these concerns since 2007. . . .

ABC News 11/17
Views on the Terror Trials
Americans divide evenly on whether to try 9/11 suspects in U.S. civilian courts or military tribunals, a split – like so many – driven chiefly by partisan and ideological differences. . . .

Washington Post 11/17
Deep divisions linger on health care
As the Senate prepares to take up legislation aimed at overhauling the nation's health-care system, President Obama and the Democrats are still struggling to win the battle for public opinion. A new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows Americans deeply divided over the proposals under consideration and majorities predicting higher costs ahead. . . .

Washington Post 11/16
So much for the power of incumbency
Amid the spin spewing from the parties over what this month's elections in New Jersey, Virginia and New York meant, there is one indisputable lesson learned: Voters don't like incumbents these days. . . .

Scott Rasmussen & Douglas E. Schoen 11/14
Obama Is Losing Independent Voters
The announcement a week ago of 10.2% unemployment is a significant political event for President Barack Obama. It could well usher in a particularly serious crisis for his political standing, influence and ability to advance his agenda. . . .

GQRR/POS 11/13
Prevention as Part of Health Care Reform
When it comes to health care reform, one thing is clear: the American electorate wants prevention to play a central role in shaping a new direction for our health care system. . . .

Rhodes Cook 11/12
'09 Elections: Some Parting Thoughts
No doubt off-year elections can be overanalyzed. They are few in number. They sometimes give evidence of conflicting trends. And their predictive value for the midterm elections to follow has been rather conclusively debunked. . . .

Pew Research Center 11/12
Battle of the Budget Bulge
Americans are famous both for being weight conscious, and at the same time unable to come to terms successfully with their bloated waistlines. The same paradox has applied to how the public looks at budget deficits for a very long time. . . .

Gary Langer 11/12
Chasing Feathers
... We swim in a sea of manufactured data – produced not to independently know and assess public attitudes or behavior but rather intentionally to misinform or even disinform – to promote a policy or product, an agenda or a point of view, a candidate or a career. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation (pdf) 11/12
The U.S. Role in Global Health
... As we found in March, the public continues to support maintaining or increasing spending on global health. . . .

David Hill 11/11
Independents recast pollsters
... Independents, by voting almost 2-to-1 for Republicans in Virginia and New Jersey, turned over two governors' mansions. This is particularly interesting because students of partisanship and opinions know that self-professed independents often have belief systems that are outrageously strange. . . .

Mark Mellman 11/11
Lessons from Election '09
Last week, I asserted that Tuesday's election would tell us precious little we did not already know. That prediction proved mostly, though not completely, correct. . . .

Pew Research Center 11/11
A Year Out, Widespread Anti-Incumbent Sentiment
The mood of America is glum. ... Despite the public's grim mood, overall opinion of Barack Obama has not soured – his job approval rating of 51% is largely unchanged since July, although his approval rating on Afghanistan has declined. But opinions about congressional incumbents are another matter. . . .

Gallup 11/11
Republicans Edge Ahead of Democrats in 2010 Vote
Republicans have moved ahead of Democrats by 48% to 44% among registered voters in the latest update on Gallup's generic congressional ballot for the 2010 House elections, after trailing by six points in July and two points last month. . . .

The State 11/11
South isn't buying Obama health plan
Barack Obama's push to revamp the nation's health care system is getting the cold shoulder from Southerners, according to a new poll by Winthrop University. But the president, who picked up a trio of Southern states in winning the 2008 presidential election, remains well-liked in this region, with solid majorities saying he is warm and friendly, trustworthy and concerned about people like those polled in South Carolina and 10 other Southern states. . . .

Robert Blendon 11/9
Keep an Eye on Public Opinion
... Regardless of public enthusiasm for health reform as a principle, and support for many policy elements in the House bill itself, most Americans do not see their health care situation as getting better if this legislation is signed into law, and some see their situation as getting worse. . . .

Washington Post: Dan Balz 11/8
Republicans seek a path to revival
One year after hitting bottom in the aftermath of President Obama's election, Republicans have taken their first concrete steps toward recovery. But they remain an embattled and divided force, facing an electorate still skeptical about their capacity to govern and embroiled in a struggle between party regulars and populist conservative forces over how to return to power. . . .

Los Angeles Times 11/8
California's best years have passed, voters say
Frustrated at California's woes, voters are sharply pessimistic about whether the next governor will be able to move the state in the right direction, and most believe California is in the midst of a long-term decline, a new Los Angeles Times/USC poll shows. . . .

Pew Research Center 11/6
Public Divided Over Afghan Troop Requests
As President Obama and his staff weigh their difficult choices in the Afghanistan theater, the public also appears to be finding it difficult to judge the merits of different options for expanding, maintaining or contracting the U.S. effort on that front. . . .

Los Angeles Times 11/6
Voters oppose putting gay marriage on ballot next year
A small majority of California voters supports the right of gay couples to marry, but a much larger portion of voters opposes efforts to place the issue back on the ballot next year, a new Los Angeles Times/USC poll has found. . . .

Harvard School of Public Health 11/6
Majority Unable to Get H1N1 Vaccine
A new national poll from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers found that a majority of adults who tried to get the H1N1 vaccine for themselves or their children have been unable to do so. . . .

ABC News 11/6
Year After Obama vs. McCain, Obama vs. the Economy
A year after he went one-on-one with John McCain, Barack Obama's now playing for time. For all that's transpired since his election as president, public opinion has not moved on the big issue, the current economy. . . .

Alan I. Abramowitz 11/5
What Happens in VA and NJ Stays in VA and NJ
... Before we conclude that Republican victories in Virginia and New Jersey provide an early indication of what is likely to happen in next year's midterm elections, we need to take a more systematic look at the evidence. . . .

Monmouth University Polling Institute 11/5
New Jersey: Who Voted, Where and How?
Well, the pundits said that turnout would be the name of the game in New Jersey this year. The problem is we were looking at the wrong type of turnout. While we were busy focusing on core Democratic areas, the Republicans upped the ante on their own turf. . . .

Washington Post 11/5
For parties, the soul-searching begins
... [M]oderate and conservative Democrats took a clear signal from Tuesday's voting, warning that the results prove that independent voters are wary of Obama's far-reaching proposals and mounting spending, as well as the growing federal debt. . . .

Washington Post 11/5
As GOP celebrates, internal ideological battles remain
... As the party turns toward the 2010 midterm elections, pitched battles between moderates and conservatives -- and between the Washington establishment and the conservative grass roots -- are underway from Florida to Illinois to California. . . .

John Zogby 11/4
Reading Tuesday's election results
So what did we learn from Tuesday's elections? And what lessons should Democrats and Republicans draw from the results? . . .

Gallup 11/4
Political Climate Not as Favorable to Democrats
The 2010 election cycle begins in a political climate that is shaping up to be not as favorable to the Democratic Party as the 2006 and 2008 elections were. . . .

Glen Bolger 11/4
VA: An Analysis of Bob McDonnell's Win
Democrat claims that Bob McDonnell's victory in Virginia is just a Republican electorate reasserting itself and has nothing to do with Barack Obama are simply trying to put lipstick on a pig. Saying Virginia is a Republican state is like saying the Washington Redskins are a well-run organization. It was once true, but not any more. . . .

Washington Post: Dan Balz 11/4
Warning to Democrats: It's not 2008 anymore
... Neither gubernatorial election amounted to a referendum on the president, but the changing shape of the electorates in both states and the shifts among key constituencies revealed cracks in the Obama 2008 coalition and demonstrated that, at this point, Republicans have the more energized constituency heading into next year's midterm elections. . . .

ABC News 11/4
Exit Polls: Voters Approve of Obama, Wary of Economy
Vast economic discontent marked the mood of Tuesday's off-year voters, portending potential trouble for incumbents generally and Democrats in particular in 2010. Still the gubernatorial elections in Virginia and New Jersey looked less like a referendum on Barack Obama than a reflection of their own candidates and issues. . . .

David Hill 11/4
Ball-watchers focus on prior results
... While most fans try to follow the ball on every play, the expert's field of view widens to pay attention to defensive schemes, pulling linemen, downfield blocking and a host of other things nowhere near the ball. I wish most political pundits had a wider field of view. . . .

Mark Mellman 11/4
Tell me something I don't know
By the time you read this, thousands of words will have been written about what Tuesday's elections portend — not for the people of New Jersey, Virginia and New York's 23rd congressional district, but for the fate of Democrats and Republicans in 2010. . . .

Democracy Corps 11/3
The Economy at a Sensitive Juncture
With GDP growth having finally returned, but unemployment still rising slowly toward 10 percent, the economy is at a sensitive juncture as an issue for the 2010 elections. . . .

New York Times 11/3
3 Contests Could Signal Political Winds
In this supposedly quiet off-year election, there are three contests taking place Tuesday that are filling the void. Voters in New Jersey and Virginia will elect a governor, while voters in upstate New York are filling a vacant House seat in a race with national implications. Here are some things to look for as the results come in. . . .

Pew Research Center 11/2
End of Communism Cheered but with More Reservations
Nearly two decades after the fall of the Berlin Wall, publics of former Iron Curtain countries generally look back approvingly at the collapse of communism. ... However, the initial widespread enthusiasm about these changes has dimmed in most of the countries surveyed. . . .

ABC News: Gary Langer 11/2
Tomorrow's Elections: An Obama Referendum?
While spinmeisters from both sides will do their best after tomorrow’s results are in, it's a dicey business to draw broad conclusions from state and local off-year elections. ... But first things first: Is tomorrow's voting a referendum on Barack Obama? . . .

Gallup 11/2
Generic Ballot Provides Clues for 2010 Vote
One year from today, U.S. voters will head to the polls to elect all 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Gallup measures voting intentions in midterm elections using the generic congressional ballot, which has proven an accurate predictor of the eventual vote in midterm elections. . . .

John Harwood 11/2
If Fox Is Partisan, It Is Not Alone
The Obama White House's decision to challenge Fox News appears driven equally by strategy and frustration. It is also a test case for politicians in both parties. That is because partisan fragmentation throughout America's news media and their audiences has grown significantly. . . .

Frank Luntz 11/1
Health Reform Language Highlights
I was there in 1994. I saw what happened when a once-popular president tried to push healthcare legislation that Americans didn't want or appreciate. . . .

Ronald Brownstein 10/31
A Reaganite Or Jacksonian Wave?
... From the White House to Capitol Hill, Democrats are wagering that they can sell Americans on a sweeping and in some ways unprecedented expansion of government's reach to confront both the immediate economic downturn and such long-term challenges as health care and climate change. . . .

Gallup 10/30
Americans on Healthcare Reform: Five Key Realities
Americans are closely divided on the issue of passing comprehensive healthcare reform, meaning that public opinion offers no real political advantage to either champions or opponents of the idea. That said, a review of Gallup polls conducted throughout the debate reveals five realities crucial to understanding public opinion on this issue. . . .

Larry J. Sabato 10/29
VA: Look to the north stars
We're heading 'round the final bend in this year's Virginia contest for governor, so it's time to take a look at our traditional gubernatorial "north stars." These stars, fixed in the firmament and reliable indicators for decades, have long guided our prognostications. . . .

New York Times: Marjorie Connelly 10/29
Polls and the Public Option
In recent weeks, polls kept showing solid support for a public insurance option, seeming to breathe new life into its viability as a provision of the health care legislation under way in Congress. In fact, advocates of a public option, from left-leaning groups to pundits to lawmakers, seized on each new number and trumpeted the news across the 24/7 news spectrum of Twitter, TV ads, blogs and headlines. . . .

John Kenneth White (in The Polling Report) 10/28
Barack Obama's America
In 1970, Richard Scammon and Ben Wattenberg famously defined the "Real Majority" as being "un-young, un-poor, and un-black." ... A shift in the nation's demography and cultural thinking is tilting the electoral landscape in favor of the Democrats. Since 1970, the U.S. has experienced four historic transformations: (1) a racial revolution where whites will be a minority of the U.S. population by mid-century; (2) a revolution in family structures where having a mom, dad, and kids living at home with their biological parents is no longer the norm; (3) a gay rights revolution where greater tolerance toward homosexuals prevails; and (4) a religious revolution where the location of faith is not necessarily in a church building, but in the heart of the individual. Taken together, these trends are undermining Scammon and Wattenberg's Real Majority. This was especially noticeable in 2008, when John McCain performed well among un-young, un-poor, and un-black voters -- and still lost. . . .

USA Today 10/28
1-year poll shows changed views on Obama
Shannon Norris thinks President Obama deserves more time to deliver on his promises from last year's campaign. But not too much more. ... As the anniversary of the election approaches, the tidal wave of hope that swept Obama into office has ebbed and some perceptions of the president have changed, the USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds. . . .

David Hill 10/28
Gallup says conservatism surging
... But where the Gallup report gets juiciest is in its more important assertion that Americans are also shifting to the conservative perspective on some specific issues, notably government regulation, the influence of labor unions, gun laws, global warming, abortion and even "traditional values." . . .

E.J. Dionne 10/28
Is America really becoming more conservative?
If I were a conservative, I would probably tout the new Gallup study showing that conservatives now outnumber moderates, as Bill Kristol did in his column on Tuesday. But I'd be wary of making too much of what is a rather small shift in the ideological self-description of Americans. And out of curiosity, I checked around with other pollsters to see what they were finding. The results were mixed. . . .

Mark Mellman 10/28
Ironies of healthcare reform
In a republic such as ours, public policy is only loosely related to public opinion. Nonetheless, it is ironic that the most controversial element of healthcare reform with the public seems least controversial on Capitol Hill, while what is most controversial there is least controversial with voters. . . .

Democracy Corps 10/27
2010 Congressional Battleground
... A new survey from Democracy Corps conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research across the 75 most competitive congressional districts suggests potential losses for the Democrats well within the normal historical range. Their losses will be offset by some further Republican losses and are unlikely to approach what it would take for Republicans to regain congressional control. . .

Washington Post 10/27
The Obama factor: Virginia edition
Virginia Democrats hope President Obama's campaign stop today in Norfolk will boost Democratic gubernatorial candidate R. Creigh Deeds' standing and improve turnout in the final days of the campaign, but most in a new Washington Post poll say the president will not affect their vote next Tuesday. . . .

Washington Post 10/27
McDonnell has double-digit lead in Va. governor's race
Republican Robert F. McDonnell carries a double-digit lead over Democrat R. Creigh Deeds into the final week of the campaign for Virginia governor, according to a new Washington Post poll. . . .

Gallup 10/26
Conservatives Maintain Edge as Top Ideological Group
Conservatives continue to outnumber moderates and liberals in the American populace in 2009, confirming a finding that Gallup first noted in June. . . .

Anti-Defamation League 10/26
American Support For Israel Remains Solid
The American people's strong support for Israel remains constant and their support for action to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power has substantially increased, according to a new nationwide survey released by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today. . . .

Patrick Murray 10/26
NJ: Understanding Unaffiliated Voters
It's time to clear up some confusion about unaffiliated and independent voters. If you are a member of the media who reports on New Jersey election polls or turnout, you should read this. . . .

Washington Post 10/25
Va. GOP makes timely changes
... The changes in Virginia have mirrored shifts that have occurred nationally, helping Democrats win elections by appealing to increasingly diverse, moderate, well-educated and affluent suburban voters outside such cities as Philadelphia, Denver and Minneapolis. ... National Republicans think a victory by McDonnell, who has led in every poll since June, would resonate well beyond Virginia because it would show that although many new, suburban voters have backed Democrats in recent elections, they're not wedded to the party. . . .

Patrick Egan & Joshua Tucker 10/25
Obama and the politics of an Afghanistan troop surge
President Obama faces an enormous political challenge in figuring out how to respond to General Stanley McChrystal's request for more soldiers in Afghanistan. ... No matter what choice Obama makes, he should not be deluded into thinking that his rhetorical gifts can move public opinion on this issue. According to research by Professor George Edwards of Texas A&M University, recent presidents, no matter how golden-tongued, have had virtually no power to change public opinion on foreign policy. . . .

USA Today 10/24
Hopes buoyed on race relations
While some of the soaring optimism of Election Day has tempered, more than six in 10 Americans predict in a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll that Barack Obama's presidency will improve race relations in the United States in the years ahead. . . .

Kaiser (pdf)  10/23
Health tracking poll
In contrast to recent months, public opinion on health care reform stabilized in October with no dramatic changes in support, opposition or even public interest. A majority continues to say now is the time for health care reform; several key proposals (individual mandate, public plan) garner public support; opinion on policy specifics remains malleable; partisans are poles apart; and a significant minority remains concerned about their personal welfare if health care reform passes. . . .

Gallup 10/22
Half See Own Costs Worsening Under Healthcare Bill
Compared with last month, Americans have become more likely to say the costs their family pays for healthcare will get worse if a healthcare bill passes. Forty-nine percent of Americans say this, up from 42% in September. Meanwhile, the percentage who expect their costs to improve is unchanged. . . .

Pew 10/22
Fewer See Solid Evidence of Global Warming
There has been a sharp decline over the past year in the percentage of Americans who say there is solid evidence that global temperatures are rising. And fewer also see global warming as a very serious problem – 35% say that today, down from 44% in April 2008. . . .

Rhodes Cook 10/22
Presidents and their party's primaries
On many of the great issues of the day, President Barack Obama has drawn some criticism for a lack of decisive leadership. But he has shown little hesitation in taking sides in some high-profile Democratic primaries that could just as readily divide the party in 2010 as unite it. . . .

Washington Post 10/22
Despite H1N1 fears, many worry about vaccination
Americans have become increasingly alarmed about the swine flu, but many are wary about getting vaccinated against the disease, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Gallup 10/21
Obama Quarterly Approval Average Slips to 53%
In Gallup Daily tracking that spans Barack Obama's third quarter in office (July 20 through Oct. 19), the president averaged a 53% job approval rating. That is down sharply from his prior quarterly averages, which were both above 60%. . . .

Harvard School of Public Health 10/21
MA: Physicians Support Continuing Health Reform Law
A study published in today's New England Journal of Medicine finds that a large majority (70%) of practicing physicians in Massachusetts support health reform three years after its passage in 2006. . . .

Washington Post 10/21
U.S. deeply split on troop increase for Afghan war
As President Obama and his war cabinet deliberate a new strategy for the war in Afghanistan, Americans are evenly and deeply divided over whether he should send 40,000 more troops there, and public approval of the president's handling of the situation has tumbled, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

USA Today 10/21
Americans skittish over health changes
Americans are increasingly worried about the cost and quality of medical care that could result from President Obama's effort to revamp health care, but a majority still trust him more than Republicans to change the system, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll shows. . . .

Mark Mellman 10/21
Thank heaven for Republicans
With Democrats allegedly on the ropes and voters concerned about rising debt and reeling from growing unemployment, you might think Republicans would be sitting pretty. They aren't -- the Republican brand is in tatters -- and Democrats should be grateful for the GOP's political ineptitude. . . .

ABC News 10/20
Pols, Polls and Pushback
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich had some pretty harsh criticism of our latest poll today, charging in a radio interview that it was "deliberately rigged." He's entitled, of course, to his opinion. But not to a distortion of the facts. . . .

Washington Post 10/19
Majority now supports public health insurance option
As Democratic congressional leaders and White House officials work to shape health care bills that will go to the House and Senate floors, a new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows that support for a government-run health plan to compete with private insurers has rebounded from its summertime lows and now wins clear majority support from the public. . . .

Dan Balz 10/18
2010 Threat to Democrats Comes From Three Directions
Three forces threaten Democrats in the 2010 elections: populist anger on the right, disaffection in the middle and potential disillusionment on the left. . . .

Ronald Brownstein 10/17
Is the American Dream a Myth?
One tenet that separates the United States from other countries is our belief in upward mobility. ... But as Brookings Institution scholars Ron Haskins and Isabel Sawhill demonstrate in a compelling new book, America's record doesn't entirely justify this optimism. . . .

Democracy Corps 10/16
Conservative Republicans: A world apart
The self-identifying conservative Republicans who make up the base of the Republican Party stand a world apart from the rest of America, according to focus groups conducted by Democracy Corps. These base Republican voters ... identify themselves as part of a 'mocked' minority with a set of shared beliefs and knowledge, and commitment to oppose Obama that sets them apart from the majority in the country. . . .

Center for American Progress 10/16
Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Changes Everything
... This is a report about how women becoming half of workers changes everything for men, women, and their families. The Rockefeller/Time nationwide poll, conducted in early September as the chapters of the report were being finalized, finds that the battle of the sexes is over and is replaced by negotiations between the sexes about work, family, household responsibilities, child care, and elder care. . . .

New York Times 10/16
Poll Finds Little Faith in New Jersey's Candidates
In New Jersey, one of only two states with governor's races this year, voters are gloomy about the future, upset about their own circumstances and deeply unsettled by the economy. . . .

Andrew Kohut 10/15
But What Do the Polls Show?
... Those who can back up their assertions by pointing to poll results find the going easier than leaders who cannot. In turn, news organizations cover policy initiatives differently when programs appear to have popular support compared with when they do not. As a result, the public has become a more important player in national affairs over the past three decades. . . .

Christian Science Monitor 10/14
Americans want healthcare reform at no cost to them
Democrats in Washington are navigating treacherous electoral terrain as they craft healthcare reform legislation, judging by new polls that show Americans pulled by conflicting desires on healthcare. They are eager for change but hesitant about paying for it. . . .

Gallup 10/12
Obama Job Approval at 56% After Nobel Win
Barack Obama appears to have gotten a slight bounce in support after he was announced as the Nobel Peace Prize winner on Friday. His 56% job approval rating for the last two Gallup Daily tracking updates is up from a term-low 50% as recently as last week, and 53% in the three days before the Nobel winner was announced. . . .

Ronald Brownstein 10/11
Paddling Alone On The Economic Rapids
... The Allstate/National Journal poll's two central findings -- of a shared conviction that average Americans can expect heightened economic instability and a bitter divergence over the proper government response -- seem a recipe for intense political conflict. One final ingredient makes the mix even more volatile: Most Americans say that the past year's tumult has diminished their confidence in government, big companies, banks, and Wall Street. . . .

Pew Research Center 10/9
Majority Continues to Support Civil Unions
A clear majority of Americans (57%) favors allowing gay and lesbian couples to enter into legal agreements with each other that would give them many of the same rights as married couples, a status commonly known as civil unions. . . .

Washington Post 10/8
Poll May Point to Democratic Worries Beyond Va.
The latest Washington Post poll of the Virginia gubernatorial race represents more than bad news for Democratic nominee R. Creigh Deeds. The findings paint a portrait of the electorate that, if replicated elsewhere, stands as a warning sign for President Obama and Democrats who will be running in next year's midterm elections. . . .

Brookings Institution / WorldPublicOpinion.org (pdf) 10/8
Health Care Reform: Battleground or Common Ground?
... Much polling has been conducted in recent months as the health care debate has heated up. However, a large portion of it has focused on the political dynamics. Support for reform has eroded. Views of the administration have cooled, but views of the Republicans are worse. It is not clear whether these tepid responses are to the actual content of reforms proposed or if they are a reaction to the highly partisan character of the debate. . . .

Pew Research Center 10/8
Mixed Views of Economic Policies, Health Care Reform
... On the economy, most Americans remain optimistic that Barack Obama's policies will help, but the public expresses mixed views of the steps he has taken so far and sees no clear signs of recovery at this point. Regarding health care reform, many of the key provisions remain popular though support for the overall package has slipped. . . .

Mark Mellman 10/7
The Jews and the Democrats
... Only three demographic groups gave margins of 50 points or more to John Kerry: African-Americans, gays and Jews. Three groups also gave margins of 50 points or better to Barack Obama: blacks, Jews and those who identify with no religion. . . .

Gallup 10/6
Approval of Congress Falls to 21%
Americans' approval of the job Congress is doing is at 21% this month, down significantly from last month's 31% and from the recent high of 39% in March. ... The current drop in overall job approval to 21% particularly reflects a substantial drop in approval among Democrats, whose 36% rating this month is 18 points lower than last month's 54%, and the lowest since January of this year. . . .

New America Media 10/6
Americans Largely Unaware of Stimulus Opportunities
Americans' opinions about the federal government's $787 billion stimulus package and its impact on the mired economy vary sharply among racial and ethnic groups, according to a survey released today, with ethnic Americans more likely than whites to say it is a "good thing." . . .

ABC News 10/6
The War in Afghanistan: Reassessment, Eight Years On
Significant public compunctions mark the eighth anniversary of the war in Afghanistan – more a gradual shift in Americans' attitudes than a sudden change, but a reassessment nonetheless, one that in many ways reflects the administration's own. . . .

Pew Research Center 10/6
Most Would Use Force to Stop Iranian Nukes
The public approves of direct negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program, although most Americans are not hopeful the talks will succeed. And a strong majority – 61% – says that it is more important to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, even if it means taking military action. . . .

Gallup 10/5
Opposition to Healthcare Legislation Drops Modestly
Americans' views on healthcare legislation have shifted modestly over the past three weeks, with a slight plurality (40%) now supporting the passage of a new healthcare bill, and with fewer (36%) saying they oppose a new bill. . . .

Catholics for Choice (pdf) 10/5
National Opinion Survey of Catholic Voters
The fall 2009 Catholics for Choice/Belden Russonello & Stewart survey shows health care reform is among the top issues for Catholic voters. Catholic voters prove to be more progressive than U.S. Catholic Bishops, and to some extent, President Obama, when considering reforms to health care. . . .

Ronald Brownstein 10/3
A Fleeting GOP Boost In 2010
From all indications, the face of the electorate will look very different in 2010 from the way it did in 2008. That prospect presents an immediate danger for Democrats. But it also represents a more subtle, long-term threat for Republicans. . . .

New York Times 10/3
Polling Firm's Reprimand Rattles News Media
For Strategic Vision L.L.C., as for many polling companies, it was a regular practice: for five years the company sent out the results of its surveys on leading political races around the country, and they made their way into blog posts, articles and national television coverage. . . .

Economic Policy Institute (pdf) 10/3
Economic Policy Institute
In a recession often described as deep and severe, we now have one more adjective to add: personal. ... Because the pain of this recession is striking so close to home, Americans strongly support continuing government action to address unemployment. . . .

Harvard School of Public Health 10/2
40% "Absolutely Certain" They Will Get H1N1 Vaccine
In a new survey, Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers found that just 40% of adults are "absolutely certain" they will get the H1N1 vaccine for themselves, and 51% of parents are "absolutely certain" that they will get the vaccine for their children. . . .

ABC News 10/2
Beyond Unemployment, the Damage Resonates
The employment numbers released today underscore what an ugly time it is for the American workforce – a reality that, as our polling shows, resonates beyond the economy to the health care debate, politics and public health alike. . . .

Gallup 10/1
More Independents Lean GOP; Gap Smallest Since '05
In the third quarter of this year, 48% of Americans identified politically as Democrats or said they were independent but leaned to the Democratic Party. At the same time, 42% identified as Republicans or as independents who leaned Republican. . . .

Alan Abramowitz 10/1
Ideology in the American Public
... There is no question that Barack Obama's victory in the 2008 presidential election and the Democratic gains in the 2006 and 2008 congressional elections dramatically changed the ideological make-up of America's political leadership. ... But did this leftward shift among our nation's political elite reflect a similar leftward shift among the American public? . . .

ABC News 10/1
Abortion Support: A Trend Away?
The Pew Research Center's out today with poll results indicating a decline in support for legal abortion this year. Consistency may be the hobgoblin of little minds, as Emerson said, but I'd still like to see more of it behind this argument. . . .

Pew Research Center 10/1
Support For Abortion Slips
... In Pew Research Center polls in 2007 and 2008, supporters of legal abortion clearly outnumbered opponents; now Americans are evenly divided on the question, and there have been modest increases in the numbers who favor reducing abortions or making them harder to obtain. . . .

NPR 9/30/09
Public Says Voice Not Heard In Health Debate
Perhaps no other issue Congress deals with touches every American as intimately as health care. Yet a new poll by NPR, the Kaiser Family Foundation, and the Harvard School of Public Health finds that, so far, the public feels profoundly shut out of the current health overhaul debate. . . .

David Hill 9/30
Dealignment and Ron Paul
It is now evident that the widely prophesized national partisan realignment is not going to happen. The election of Barack Obama did not cause a huge and permanent shift to the Democrat Party. Instead, it appears that the longer-term trend toward dealignment is still operant. . . .

Mark Mellman 9/30
Calm down, work hard
Prophesies of midterm Democratic doom are being heard from every street-corner oracle, and from some real seers too. While the good times of 2006 and 2008 won't keep rolling, Democrats would do better putting their noses to grindstones and producing important legislative victories than bewailing the predicted calamity. . . .

New York Times 9/30
Two-Thirds of Americans Object to Online Tracking
About two-thirds of Americans object to online tracking by advertisers -- and that number rises once they learn the different ways marketers are following their online movements, according to a new survey from professors at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of California, Berkeley. . . .

Washington Post 9/30
A Tug of War For Women's Votes in Race For Governor
With just five weeks to go until Election Day, the race for Virginia governor between Democrat R. Creigh Deeds and Republican Robert F. McDonnell has largely become a battle for female voters that is playing out in TV commercials, campaign appearances and women-focused events. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation (pdf) 9/29
Health Care Reform: More Important Than Ever
The latest health reform tracking poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation finds that the summer's downward slide in public support for health care reform halted and reversed course in September. . . .

Boston Globe 9/28
MA: State's health system popular
Public support for Massachusetts' closely watched health insurance overhaul has slipped over the past year, a new poll indicates, but residents still support the path-breaking 2006 law by a 2-to-1 ratio. . . .

David Yeager, Jon A. Krosnick & Harold A. Javitz 9/28
More on the Problems with Opt-in Internet Surveys
We are delighted that our new paper comparing the quality of data obtained from RDD telephone surveys, probability sample Internet surveys, and non-probability sample Internet surveys has been the focus of some discussion across the country and may help providers and purchasers of survey data to understand survey research methods better. . . .

Whit Ayres 9/28
GOP: Don't just be the 'party of no'
Paying for health care costs has become the No. 1 financial concern of American voters today. ... Consequently, efforts to control health care costs enjoy majority support. . . .

Politico 9/28
Health care polls leave pols dizzy
You could forgive a typical poll-driven pol for being driven around the bend by health reform. Legislators hoping to learn what their constituents think about the issue -- and how to vote to keep them happy -- face a dizzying deluge of hard-to-reconcile data, some of which suggests that voters are more than a little confused, as well. . . .

New York Times 9/28
Support for Ban on Texting at the Wheel
The public overwhelmingly supports the prohibition of text messaging while driving, the latest New York Times/CBS News Poll finds. Ninety percent of adults say sending a text message while driving should be illegal, and only 8% disagree. . . .

Douglas E. Schoen 9/28
Public option may be deal breaker
There's now a serious risk that the push for health care reform will end in permanent political gridlock. After spending months trying to forge a bipartisan compromise, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus released his health plan, only to find out that not a single Republican was willing to support it. . . .

Vanity Fair 9/28
The 60 Minutes/Vanity Fair Poll
In this month's poll - the first in a series - we note that the populists are out in force. Or, rather, are inside and answering their phones. Of all those polled, more than half said, Yeah, sure, go right ahead and raise taxes to 50% or higher on the very wealthiest; 43% said they would consider becoming "Wal-Mart patients" (that is, they would take advantage if the chain offered basic health-care services); and, speaking of Wal-Mart, 48% felt that the chain "best symbolizes America today." . . .

Frank Luntz 9/27
What Americans really want
... For 15 years, average Americans have exuded optimism and energy, whether they were talking about their political preferences, their employment aspirations or simply what they had for breakfast. But that was before the economic meltdown one year ago. What a difference a year makes. . . .

New York Times 9/25
Public Wary of Obama on War and Health
President Obama is confronting declining support for his handling of the war in Afghanistan and an electorate confused and anxious about a health care overhaul as he prepares for pivotal battles over both issues, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. . . .

Health Care for America Now (pdf) 9/25
Healthcare Reform and Swing District Dems
... [R]ecent polling commissioned by Health Care for America Now and conducted by Anzalone Liszt Research in ninety-one swing districts (Blue Dog, Frontline, and Rural Caucus House districts) shows that the fundamentally pro-reform environment has not changed, and swing district Democrats continue to have more to gain by supporting healthcare reform than by opposing it. . . .

C.S. Mott Children's Hospital (pdf) 9/25
Parents May Underestimate the Risks of H1N1 Flu
... Despite national recommendations issued in July emphasizing the importance for kids of vaccination against H1N1 flu, only 40% of parents intend to have their children vaccinated. . . .

Gallup 9/24
Seniors Lean Against New Healthcare Law
There are significant differences in views on a new healthcare law by age. The youngest Americans, aged 18-29, favor it by a 13-point margin, although more than 4 in 10 have no opinion on the issue. Support is more evenly divided among Americans 30-64, while those 65 and older are opposed by a 10-point margin. . . .

ABC News 9/24
Health Reform Challenge: Seniors and their Medicare
Fresh controversy over the impact of health care reform on Medicare underscores one of the Obama administration’s steepest challenges in promoting its plan: Getting seniors on the bus. . . .

Democracy Corps (pdf) 9/23
Health Speech Brings Small Rebound for Democrats
After a difficult summer for Democrats, which saw President Obama's approval ratings return to earth and support for his signature health care reform falter, a new Democracy Corps survey conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, after the president's joint-session address, shows Obama and his party's position rebounding in a small but significant way. . . .

Pew Research Center 9/23
Mexico: Crime, Economy, Drugs, Corruption
Facing a variety of national problems - crime, drugs, corruption, a troubled economy - Mexicans overwhelmingly are dissatisfied with the direction of their country. ... A substantial minority of Mexicans say that if they had the means and opportunity to go live in the U.S. they would do so. . . .

Mark Mellman 9/23
Afghanistan: A good war goes bad
Like wine turned to vinegar, the "good war" in Afghanistan has gone bad, creating a political minefield through which candidates will need to navigate carefully. . . .

ABC News 9/23
Research Group Censures an '08 Primary Pollster
The country's leading association of public opinion researchers issued a rare censure today, saying an Atlanta-based pollster, Strategic Vision, had violated its code of professional conduct by failing to release basic disclosure of its methodology in 2008 pre-election surveys. . . .

NBC News 9/22
Public pessimistic about Afghanistan
As President Barack Obama weighs sending more U.S. troops to Afghanistan, the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll finds that Americans are concerned about the progress of the conflict there. . . .

Pew Research Center 9/22
Public Support for Afghanistan War Wanes
Public support for keeping U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan has declined since June, and Americans express decidedly mixed views about whether the United States is making progress in reducing civilian casualties, defeating the Taliban militarily and establishing democracy in Afghanistan. . . .

David Moore 9/22
Those Bobblehead Polls on Health Care
A recent series of polls brings to mind a bobblehead doll, whose head wags from side to side and from front to back in a random fashion. That disconnected movement seems to be a visual representation of what the polls have been saying about the general public and its views of President Obama's efforts to reform the health care system. . . .

Lee Miringoff, Marist Institute 9/21
President Obama and Governor Paterson
With an approval rating still scraping bottom at 20% and with only 27% of New York State voters even wanting Governor David Paterson to seek election in 2010, it's little wonder the White House is getting itchy. Why is Washington so worried about the bluest of the blue states? . . .

Des Moines Register 9/21
Iowans evenly divided on gay marriage ban
Iowans are almost evenly divided about whether they would vote for or against a constitutional amendment to end marriage for same-sex couples, according to The Des Moines Register's new Iowa Poll. . . ..

Washington Post 9/20
Deeds Shows Big Gains In Va. Poll
Dramatic shifts among independent female voters and Northern Virginians over the past month have propelled Democrat R. Creigh Deeds to within four points of Republican Robert F. McDonnell in the race for Virginia governor, according to a new Washington Post poll. . . .

Ronald Brownstein 9/18
Dems Lose Footing In The Mountain West
... For Democrats, the Mountain West has been one of this decade's towering success stories. ... Now, however, amid a fierce conservative backlash against President Obama's agenda, Democrats face an escalating challenge to defend those advances in 2010. . . .

Charlie Cook 9/18
Dems Should Focus On The Color Purple
... Resurgent Republic's findings corroborate a growing view that the cumulative impact of Democratic missteps has reached a critical mass, with Obama receiving some damage and with Democrats in Congress and the Democratic Party receiving much more. . . .

American Security Project (pdf) 9/17
National Survey On Global Warming
While politicians continue to debate the issue, the public has decided. They believe global warming is real, is caused by humans and constitutes a serious threat to both our economy and our national security. . . .

Larry J. Sabato 9/17
The Presidential Jinx
It was nearly twenty years ago. While assessing L. Douglas Wilder's 1989 victory for governor of Virginia, I first noticed that for four consecutive elections (1977, 1981, 1985, and 1989), the Old Dominion had voted for the gubernatorial nominee of the party opposite to the one controlling the White House. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation (pdf) 9/17
Americans' Satisfaction with Insurance Coverage
... Though a large majority of the public reports satisfaction with their health insurance coverage, a closer look identifies significant variations among demographic groups and those with differing health care needs. . . .

ABC News 9/16
Obama's Strong Disapproval
A debate's alight on why disapproval of Barack Obama has become so unusually strong. The answer: It hasn't. Three of the last four presidents have seen this level of strong unpopularity – one of them faster; another, far deeper. . . .

Bloomberg 9/16
Obama Gets 56% Job Approval Amid Deficit Concerns
President Barack Obama earns high marks for his performance even as Americans express anxiety about his domestic policies. One possible reason: Republicans aren't offering an alternative. . . .

Bloomberg 9/16
Americans Back Obama's Health Goals
Americans overwhelmingly approve of President Barack Obama's goals for remaking the U.S. health care system even as they express skepticism he can achieve them, according to a Bloomberg News poll. . . .

Mark Mellman 9/16
Gaps in the healthcare debate
Two gaps are shaping the terrain for the healthcare debate. One of them has persisted for at least the 18 years we have been working on healthcare reform -- the gap between the number who are dissatisfied with the system generally and those who may feel the same but are satisfied with their own coverage. . . .

ABC News 9/15
Afghanistan Troop Boost Looks Unpopular
Most Americans are unlikely to cotton to Admiral Mike Mullen's testimony today that more U.S. troops probably will be needed in Afghanistan: Only about a quarter of the public favors increasing the levels of U.S. forces there, and 51% continue to see the war as not worth fighting. . . .

Washington Post 9/15
Lots of Fear Remains Over Economy, Job Losses
Despite fresh signs that the worst may be over for the beleaguered U.S. economy, there has been no letup in public fears about possible financial hardship ahead and there is broad concern that not enough is being done to avert another meltdown, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Slate 9/15
Pollster, Heal Thyself
How did President Obama do in his big health care speech last week? Let's judge using the White House's measuring stick. . . .

New England Journal of Medicine 9/15
Physicians' Views on a New Public Insurance Option
In the past few months, a key point of contention in the health care reform debate has been whether a public health insurance option should be included in the final legislation. ... Overall, a majority of physicians (62.9%) supported public and private options. . . .

WorldPublicOpinion.org 9/14
Support for Increased Gov't Spending, Regulation
Majorities around the world support governments playing an active role in stimulating and regulating their national economy in response to the current recession, according to a new poll across 20 countries conducted for BBC World Service. . . .

Washington Post 9/14
Reform Opposition Is High but Easing
President Obama continues to face significant public resistance to his drive to initiate far-reaching changes to the country's health-care system, with widespread skepticism about central tenets of his plan, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. But after a summer of angry debate and protests, opposition to the effort has eased somewhat, and there appears to be potential for further softening among critics if Congress abandons the idea of a government-sponsored health insurance option, a proposal that has become a flash point in the debate. . . .

Pew Research Center 9/14
Press Accuracy Rating Hits Two Decade Low
The public's assessment of the accuracy of news stories is now at its lowest level in more than two decades of Pew Research surveys, and Americans' views of media bias and independence now match previous lows. . . .

Salon 9/14
White voters and Obama's slide in the polls
Barack Obama made his name by telling us that there aren't two separate Americas, black and white, but just one United States. Still, knowing the color of a voter's skin offers a fair amount of information about how that voter feels about the president. Among white voters, it's been dropping since this spring. . . .

New York Times 9/13
Politics and the Age Gap
AMERICAN politics has been defined by gender gaps, racial gaps, geographic gaps and the gap between the religious and the secular. Now comes the geriatric gap. . . .

Resurgent Republic 9/11
Independent-Minded Obama Voters and Cong. Leaders
An extensive round of focus groups (five pairs) during August with Independents who voted for President Obama last November, but who are undecided on the congressional generic ballot, provided revealing insights about voters' concerns over the economy, government spending, mounting Federal debt and government intervention into the private sector. . . .

German Marshall Fund (pdf) 9/9
Support for U.S. Leadership Skyrockets in Europe
After his first half-year in office, U.S. President Barack Obama had nearly reversed the collapse in public support for the United States witnessed across much of Europe under his predecessor, President George W. Bush. . . .

Pew Research Center 9/9
Muslims Widely Seen As Facing Discrimination
Eight years after the terrorist attacks of 9/11, Americans see Muslims as facing more discrimination inside the U.S. than other major religious groups. . . .

Mark Mellman 9/9
Presidential popularity dynamics
It has all the makings of real drama -- an enormously talented and extremely popular president finds his public support sapped by overreaching and a series of alleged missteps. A neat story, written by many, with just one big hole -- it's not quite true. . . .

ABC News 9/8
Health Care Address: Have We Seen This Movie?
As President Obama prepares for tomorrow night's address on health care reform, there's a cautionary note from the last go 'round: With Bill Clinton as a guide, the evidence suggests that a good speech, in and of itself, won't do it. . . .

Pew Health Group 9/8
Americans Want Stronger Food Safety Rules
Among likely voters surveyed across the nation, about 9 in 10 support the federal government adopting additional food safety measures, and 64% believe that imported foods are often or sometimes unsafe, according to a new Pew-commissioned poll by the bipartisan team of Hart Research and Public Opinion Strategies. . . .

Los Angeles Times 9/7
Obama is fast losing white voters' support
After a summer of healthcare battles and sliding approval ratings for President Obama, the White House is facing a troubling new trend: The voters losing faith in the president are the ones he had worked hardest to attract. . . .

Charlie Cook 9/5
Bleeding Independents
... Obama and Capitol Hill leaders don't need to worry too much about their modest drop in support from Democratic voters or the predictable drop on the Republican side. But top Democrats should be very frightened about the sharp drop in support among independents, because it could ultimately threaten their party's hold on the House and shrink their majority in the Senate. . . .

ABC News: Gary Langer 9/4
Obama's Slide: An Appraisal
I've fielded a few questions this week on President Obama's slide in approval, mainly prompted by two factors: Gallup polls that had him down to 50%, and an op-ed by New York Times columnist David Brooks declaring that he's fallen farther, faster than any previous newly elected president in polling history. . . .

Alan I. Abramowitz 9/3
Forecasting the Midterm Elections
... The results of a statistical analysis of congressional election results since World War II indicate that Republicans are almost certain to make at least modest gains in the House of Representatives and could pick up a few seats in the Senate. However, their chances of regaining control of either chamber appear to range from slim in the case of the House to none in the case of the Senate. . . .

Rutgers University (pdf) 9/3
The Anguish of Unemployment
A comprehensive national survey conducted among 1,200 Americans nationwide who have been unemployed and looking for a job in the past 12 months, including 894 who are still jobless, portrays a shaken, traumatized people coping with serious financial and psychological effects from an economic downturn of epic proportion. . . .

McClatchy 9/3
GOP now likes polls
Republicans are using ammunition they scorned for years to attack President Barack Obama's proposed health care overhaul: polls. GOP operatives are trumpeting opinion surveys that show Obama's popularity declining and support flagging for his bid to use the federal government to provide medical coverage to uninsured Americans. . . .

Gallup 9/2
Democratic Advantage in Party Affiliation Shrinks
In August, an average of 45% of Americans identified as Democrats or leaned to the Democratic Party, while 40% identified as Republicans or leaned to the Republican Party. This 5-point advantage represents a decided narrowing of the gap between the parties from the 17-point Democratic advantage in January. . . .

Pew Research Center 9/2
Congressional Favorability at 24-Year Low
Americans are extremely displeased with Congress, and there are already some signs that this could take a toll on the Democrats in the 2010 midterm elections. ... Positive opinions of Congress have declined by 13 points since April and are now at one of their lowest points in more than two decades of Pew Research Center surveys. . . .

University of Calif., Santa Cruz 9/2
Calif.: Declining support for the death penalty
Although a majority of Californians still favor the death penalty, a new public-opinion poll by a UC professor reveals that support for capital punishment has eroded significantly since 1989, the last time a detailed statewide survey on the topic was conducted. . . .

ABC News 9/1
Study Finds Trouble for Opt-in Internet Surveys
A new study led by Stanford University researchers raises doubts about the accuracy of one of the most common forms of survey research, polls done among people who sign up to fill in questionnaires via the internet in exchange for cash and gifts. . . .

Pew Center on the States (pdf) 9/1
Voter Registration Modernization
America's current voter registration system is outdated, costly and inaccurate. Citizens and election officials alike experience the burdens of a paper-based, voter-initiated process that fails to leverage new technology that could result in more legitimate votes being counted and ensure the integrity of our elections. . . .

Education Next/Harvard 8/31
The Persuadable Public
What do Americans think about their schools? More important, perhaps, what would it take to change their minds? Can a president at the peak of his popularity convince people to rethink their positions on specific education reforms? . . .

Thomson Reuters 8/31
Healthcare Consumer Confidence Improves
Americans have grown increasingly confident about their ability to pay for healthcare services. A new report -- Thomson Reuters Healthcare Indexes(TM): Consumer Confidence -- found that consumer confidence related to healthcare expenditures increased 12% between March and July. . . .

Phil Trounstine & Jerry Roberts 8/31
Poll results that are poles apart
... [P]olitical misinformation and misinterpretation can be more viral than the truth in the Internet News Age, as reporting on polls pulses through the electronic highway, launched by news organizations with little time to evaluate and sift the quality of research. . . .

Ezra Klein 8/30
No Government Health Care! (Except for Mine.)
"We need to protect Medicare," Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele exhorted last week, "and not cut it in the name of 'health-insurance reform.' " ... [T]he White House is struggling to attract seniors to health-care reform. No age group is as solidly opposed to the project as the over-65 set. But that's the same set that relies on government-run health care and loves it. . . .

Washington Post 8/28
Seniors' Negative Turn on Health Care Reform
Of the several demographic and political groups whose views on health care reform have become more negative over the summer, seniors stand out for both a dramatic shift against reform and the strength of their opposition. . . .

James Surowiecki 8/28
Status-Quo Anxiety
There are times when Americans' attitude toward health-care reform seems a bit like St. Augustine's take on chastity: Give it to us, Lord, but not yet. In theory, the public overwhelmingly supports reform -- earlier this year, polls showed big majorities in favor of fundamental change. But, when it comes to actually making fundamental change, people go all wobbly. . . .

ABC News 8/28
Exit Poll Response Rates: Don't Bring Me Down
Response rates to the 2008 national exit poll fell by 9 points compared with 2004, with larger, double-digit declines in 17 state exit polls, according to data from Edison Research, which conducts the exit polls for a media consortium including ABC News. . . .

Washington Post 8/28
On Energy, Obama Finds Broad Support
Most Americans approve of the way President Obama is handling energy issues and support efforts by him and Democrats in Congress to overhaul energy policy -- including the controversial cap-and-trade approach to limiting greenhouse gas emissions, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Register-Guard (Eugene, Ore.) 8/27
Leiken: No more poll proof available
Springfield Mayor Sid Leiken says he is unable to produce any documents or data to substantiate the conducting of a poll for which he says he paid $2,000 in cash from his mayoral campaign fund to a company headed by his mother. ... Leiken, who is running for the Republican nomination in the 4th Congressional District, has been under official scrutiny since June. . . . Five pollsters and experts on public opinion survey methods were interviewed by The Register-Guard this week about the likelihood that a survey could have been conducted as described in the P&G memo. . . .

Mark Blumenthal 8/27
The Public Option: No 'Perfect' Poll
Is there a right way to "poll the public option?" Are most pollsters "getting it wrong," while only a few ask the "perfect question" about the much debated health care reform proposal to create a "public option?" . . .

Gallup 8/26
Presidential Approval Usually Falls Below 50%
Barack Obama's latest job approval rating is 51%, according to Aug. 23-25 Gallup Daily tracking. Should his rating continue its downward trend and fall below 50%, he would -- like most post-World War II presidents -- have less-than-majority approval at some point in his presidency. . . .

Public Opinion Strategies 8/26
Obama health plan struggling
New national survey data released today by Public Opinion Strategies shows the country's opinion of President Obama's health care plan is virtually the same as that measured for President Clinton's plan in 1994. . . .

Jeremy Rosner 8/26
Don't Trust the Polls on Health Reform's Demise
As Congress moves toward the decisive phase on changing America's health system, many analysts claim that declining poll numbers on health reform mean it's unlikely the effort will succeed. While support for reform did slip over the summer, here's some advice from a pollster: don't put all your trust in the polls on this one. . . .

ABC News 8/26
Ted Kennedy: A Life of Political Challenges
It'd be a serious overstatement to describe Ted Kennedy as a universally beloved political figure. In the last test of his basic popularity, a CNN poll early this month, 51% of Americans expressed a favorable opinion of him overall. Thirty-five percent saw him unfavorably; the rest had no opinion. . . .

Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup (pdf) 8/26
The Public's Attitudes Toward the Public Schools
What an extraordinary year this has been for our nation. ... Like it or not, all of these events affect our everyday lives. And with these major changes come changes in public attitudes about a variety of issues -- including education. . . .

Andrew Gelman & John Sides 8/25
The truth about Obama's victory wasn't in the papers
... The Obama victory was historic, but it was not surprising; Obama shifted, but did not redraw, the electoral map; race and class mattered, but not in the way people assumed they would matter; and partisan loyalty was powerful even as partisan defections like Colin Powell's garnered headlines. . . .

Gallup 8/24
Obama Weekly Approval Average Now 52%, a New Low
President Barack Obama's most recent weekly job approval rating is 52% for the seven-day period ending on Sunday, similar to the 54% reading from the previous week but down significantly from 59% a month ago. . . .

ABC News 8/24
Views on a Public Option: Let the Fur Fly
Fur flew last week over public opinion on the proposal that's emerged as the single most contentious point of debate in health care reform – a "public option," or government-created alternative to private insurance. It's an argument on which proponents of reform have been losing ground – and trying to claw it back. . . .

New York Times 8/24
Mining the Web for Feelings, Not Facts
... An emerging field known as sentiment analysis is taking shape around one of the computer world's unexplored frontiers: translating the vagaries of human emotion into hard data. . . .

Washington Post 8/22
Health Care Reform Drawing More Criticism From Left
... From liberal commentators to progressive bloggers to grass-roots activists who went door to door during the campaign, there has been a chorus of concerns raised about Obama . . . . A close look at public polling offers some perspective on the current clamor from the left. . . .

Patrick J. Egan & Nathaniel Persily 8/21
Court Decisions and Support for Same-Sex Marriage
The trends in public support for same-sex marriage should interest both those concerned about public attitudes toward gay rights and those with a larger interest in the way court decisions help shape public opinion. . . .

Ronald Brownstein 8/21
Where Obama Is Losing Ground
The Pew Research Center for The People & The Press national survey released Wednesday joined a lengthening line of polls showing President Obama's approval rating sinking from its heights earlier this year back to levels closer to his actual vote in November 2008. . . .

Washington Post 8/21
Faith in Obama Drops as Reform Fears Rise
Public confidence in President Obama's leadership has declined sharply over the summer, amid intensifying opposition to health-care reform that threatens to undercut his attempt to enact major changes to the system, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Indiana University 8/20
"Myths" about health care reform
Researchers from Indiana University's Center for Health Policy and Professionalism Research (CHPPR) and the Center for Bioethics (IUCB) have found that, in general, a majority of Americans believe the controversial assertions being made about the health care reforms being proposed by the White House. . . .

Pew Research Center 8/20
Coping With End-of-Life Decisions
The national debate over health care reform has focused new attention on the decisions people make about medical care at the end stages of life. Public opinion polls show that Americans overwhelmingly support an individual's right to decide whether he or she wants to be kept alive through medical treatment. . . .

Gallup 8/20
Congress' Job Approval Ratings Grow More Polarized
Gallup polling conducted in the first few days of Congress' August recess -- a time when many members of Congress were preparing to meet their constituents in town hall meetings back in their districts -- finds public approval of Congress on par with the lowest reading since February, a month after the 111th Congress convened. . . .

Pew Research Center 8/20
If Medicare was being debated today . . .

... The current highly divided climate of opinion about changing the health care system raises the question: If Medicare was being debated today would it be getting the same frosty reception that we are seeing now -- and that we saw for health care reform in the Clinton years? . . .

Washington Post 8/20
Public Opinion in U.S. Turns Against the War
A majority of Americans now see the war in Afghanistan as not worth fighting, and just a quarter say more U.S. troops should be sent to the country, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

National Journal 8/17
Indies Not Lost To Dems
As support for health care reform has eroded over the summer, Americans' views on the issue have started to harden along partisan lines. That leaves independents in the enviable, and familiar, position of being potential kingmakers in the court of public opinion. So what do indies want from reform? . . .

USA Today 8/17
57% don't see stimulus working
Six months after President Obama launched a $787 billion plan to right the nation's economy, a majority of Americans think the avalanche of new federal aid has cost too much and done too little to end the recession. . . .

James Fishkin 8/16
Town Halls by Invitation
"CONGRESS on Your Corner" has turned into "Your Congressperson Cornered." Around the country, lawmakers are finding their town hall meetings disrupted by hecklers, many echoing anti-health-care-reform messages from talk radio and cable television. Supporters of reform will surely countermobilize, leading to more outbursts and demonstrations. ... Are town halls actually the best way for lawmakers to connect with their constituents? . . .

Washington Post 8/16
VA: McDonnell Ahead In Governor's Race
Republican Robert F. McDonnell has claimed a clear early lead over Democrat R. Creigh Deeds in the race for Virginia governor, according to a new Washington Post poll. Widespread criticism of the direction of a state run for the past eight years by Democrats and an increasingly GOP-friendly electorate have propelled McDonnell, who runs competitively even in the Democratic strongholds of Northern Virginia. . . .

William Schneider 8/15
Repeat Of '94 Looks Unlikely
Remember "angry white men," the hot constituency in 1994? They drove a huge backlash against the new Democratic president and threw the Democrats out of power in Congress. ... Is history about to repeat itself? . . .

New York Times 8/15
Media Companies Seek Rival for Nielsen Ratings
For decades, media companies have been dissatisfied -- often to the point of exasperation -- with the audience information provided by Nielsen Media Research. Mostly they have just complained. Now they want to do something about it. . . .

Gallup 8/14
"Conservative" Label Prevails in the South
The strength of "conservative" over "liberal" in the realm of political labels is vividly apparent in Gallup's state-level data, where a significantly higher percentage of Americans in most states -- even some solidly Democratic ones -- call themselves conservative rather than liberal. . . .

Pew Global Attitudes Project 8/13
Pakistan: Growing Concerns about Extremism
Pakistanis see their country in crisis. They give their national government lower ratings than at any time in this decade, and almost no one is satisfied with national conditions. . . .

Gallup 8/12
Town Hall Meetings Generate Interest, Some Sympathy
More than two-thirds of Americans (69%) are closely following news accounts of town hall meetings on healthcare reform, and while 34% say the protests make them more sympathetic to the protestors' viewpoints and 21% say the protests make them less sympathetic, almost half either say the protests haven't affected their views either way or have no opinion. . . .

Pew Research Center 8/12
Forty Years After Woodstock, a Gentler Generation Gap
Forty years after the Woodstock music festival glorified and exacerbated the generational fractures in American life, the public today says there are big differences between younger and older adults in their values, use of technology, work ethic, and respect and tolerance for others. . . .

Paul Maslin 8/12
Is Obama really that unpopular?
Let's dispense with the "dog bites man" aspect of this first -- Barack Obama's approval rating has slipped. As it does for all presidents in the first year, as hope collides with reality, expectation with output. . . .

Pew Research Center 8/11
Budget Woes Take Toll on Views of State Governments
With the economy wreaking havoc on state budgets, the favorability ratings of state governments have declined from a year ago. Overall, 50% of the public now holds a favorable opinion of their state government, down from 59% in April 2008. . . .

Gallup 8/10
Obama Job Approval: Highest in D.C., Hawaii, Vermont
From the time Barack Obama took office as president until the end of June, 63% of Americans, on average, approved of the job he was doing. The breakdown of his half-year approval ratings at the state level shows that Obama's approval rating was above 50% in all but two states, Wyoming and Alaska. . . .

Charles M. Blow 8/8
Health Care Hullabaloo
One of the most frustrating aspects of the health care debate is that the people who most want reform are the most apathetic about it. . . .

CBS News 8/8
Stark Partisan Divide in Health Care Goals
President Barack Obama would like to make bipartisanship in Washington a central element of his presidency -- but when it comes to health care reform, Americans themselves have yet to reach much bipartisan consensus. . . .

Gallup 8/7
Religious Identity: States Differ Widely
The states of the union differ remarkably from one another in terms of their residents' religions. Non-Catholic Christians -- the largest religious group in the country today -- are heavily concentrated in the South and nearby states, while constituting only a minority of residents of Northeastern states, and of many Middle Atlantic and Western states. . . .

David W. Moore 8/6
Gallup's Anti-Health Care Bias
The Gallup Poll is without doubt one of the most influential media polls in the country, and as such one would hope that its analysis of public opinion would be objective. Usually that is the case. But on the current subject of healthcare reform, especially its most recent article that presents "key findings from Gallup surveys" on the issue, the post reads like a conservative manifesto for delaying legislation until it succumbs to a slow death. . . .

Mark Mellman 8/5
Health reform, long-term
Though unnerved by uncertainties about what Washington is offering, Americans are still demanding healthcare reform. If one little-discussed element of reform is missing, however, Americans will be surprised, and even distraught, while the country will be ensnared in another kind of healthcare crisis in the near future. . . .

Thomas B. Edsall 8/4
For modern GOP, a return to "white voter strategy"
With Republican party leaders so constrained by ideological blinders that none of their positions is likely to produce gains among non-white minorities, especially Hispanics, the GOP is finding it has no real alternative but to revert to a "white voter" strategy. . . .

Gallup 8/3
Political Party Affiliation: 30 States Blue, 4 Red
An analysis of Gallup Poll Daily tracking data from the first six months of 2009 finds Massachusetts to be the most Democratic state in the nation, along with the District of Columbia. Utah and Wyoming are the most Republican states, as they were in 2008. . . .

Patrick Murray, Monmouth U. 8/3
New Jersey: Corruption and the Governor's Race
It's been more than a week since New Jersey's political world was once again rocked by a series of high profile corruption busts – differentiated from past arrests only in scope and luridness. . . .

John Sides 8/2
Book Review: Method and Meaning in Polls and Surveys
In one of my posts on the value of polls, I quoted from Howard Schuman's 2008 book, Method and Meaning in Polls and Surveys. Having now finished the book, I highly recommend it. The book feels a bit like a memoir. Drawing on his corpus of research, Schuman reflects on a how polls are conducted (the "method") and how they can be interpreted (the "meaning"). . . .

Charlie Cook 8/1
Democrats' Edge Shrinks
Democrats can now assume that the charmed life they enjoyed in 2006 and 2008 is over. The wind, waves, and tides, which were strong and at their backs in those elections, will at best be still in 2010. The chances of those forces being in their faces this time are rising. . . .

Gallup 8/1
Healthcare Reform: Top 10 Takeaways
A review of public opinion research on healthcare reform reveals that Americans may have hit the slowdown button. ... The bottom line is a sense that, while Americans apparently favor some type of healthcare reform in the long term, they are in no hurry to see healthcare reform legislation passed in the short-term on a rushed schedule. . . .

William Schneider 8/1
All About Obama
"This isn't about me. This isn't about politics," President Obama said last week when talking about his push for overhauling the nation's health care system. Actually, it is about him. . . .

Gallup 7/31
Seniors Most Skeptical of Healthcare
Seniors are the least likely of all age groups in the U.S. to say that healthcare reform will benefit their personal healthcare situation. . . .

Andrew Baumann (GQRR) 7/31
Support for Health Care Reform Fundamentally Strong
In the last two days several new public polls have been released showing some softening of support for the health care reform being pushed by President Obama and Democrats in Congress. . . .

Washington Post 7/31
Obama's Poll Numbers Don't Add Up to Whole Story
There are several new polls out over the past 24 hours that show more problems for President Obama. The trend lines are consistent: declining support for his health-care plan, rising worries about the deficit and slippage in his approval ratings. But what if the polls are wrong? . . .

Washington Post 7/30
Poll Results Drive Rhetoric of Health Care Message
President Obama has framed the health-care debate in Washington as a campaign against the big, bad insurance companies, whose irresponsible actions, he repeatedly says, must be reined in to control costs and improve patient care. ... The message is no accident, as the president's chief pollster made clear last month in a rare public speech to the Economic Club of Canada. . . .

New York Times 7/30
New Poll Finds Growing Unease on Health Plan
President Obama's ability to shape the debate on health care appears to be eroding as opponents aggressively portray his overhaul plan as a government takeover that could limit Americans' ability to choose their doctors and course of treatment, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. . . .

msnbc 7/30
Obama loses ground on health care
Despite his public-relations blitz over the past two weeks to promote his plans to reform the nation's health-care system — including holding two town halls on Wednesday — President Barack Obama has lost ground on this issue with the American public, according to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll. . . .

NPR 7/29
NPR Poll: Tough Sledding For Obama
President Obama has hit a rough patch this summer, squeezed between a lingering recession and rising questions about the health care overhaul he has made the centerpiece of his first-year agenda. The nation is close to evenly split in its assessment of the president's policies to date, and there is great intensity on both sides of the debate with dwindling numbers in the middle. . . .

David Hill 7/29
Economy undermines red-blue view
The red state/blue state fad is getting old and tired. My enthusiasm for this draw-and-quarter political theory is not waning simply because the number of red states is declining. It's just that the underlying concept doesn't fit the real world in which we live. . . .

Mark Mellman 7/29
Beware of restricting healthcare
One group of politicians is working to restrict patients' choices in the guise of healthcare reform. They are striving to take away healthcare coverage from some 100 million Americans who now have it and are trying to insert themselves between you and your doctor in making medical decisions. . . .

ABC News 7/27
Biden's Approval: Like Obama's - Only Weaker
Joe Biden's predilection for wandering off the reservation in his public pronouncements hasn't done much to harm overall his job performance rating, quite similar to the boss'. But in strength of sentiment Biden lags considerably – particularly in his own party. . . .

Mark Blumenthal 7/27
The Value Of Polling
In a provocative column posted at Atlantic Online three weeks ago, Conor Clarke argued that it is "time to do away with polls." His case: Polls are often "wrong," "constant polling uncomfortably expands the domain of democracy," and perhaps most important, they too often "affect future polls and behavior." . . .

Belden Russonello & Stewart 7/27
Survey suggests insecurity driving support for reform
If you read the news headlines on health care recently, you might get the impression that most people are more worried that President Obama will succeed in getting health care reform enacted than that he will fail. ... The headlines run contrary to the constant demand for health care reform that many of us have been hearing from people across the country for many years. . . .

National Journal 7/24
Economy Brings Risk, Opportunity
More promise. But also more peril. That's the consistent verdict most Americans express about the contemporary U.S. economy in the two Allstate/National Journal Heartland Monitor surveys conducted this year. . . .

Washington Post 7/24
Palin Favorability Rating Dips As She Nears Exit
As Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin prepares for the next stage of her political career, a majority of Americans hold an unfavorable view of her, and there is broad public doubt about her leadership skills and understanding of complex issues, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Pew Global Attitudes Project 7/23
Confidence in Obama Lifts U.S. Image Around the World
The image of the United States has improved markedly in most parts of the world, reflecting global confidence in Barack Obama. In many countries opinions of the United States are now about as positive as they were at the beginning of the decade before George W. Bush took office. . . .

ABC News 7/23
Racial Discrimination: Obama, Gates and the Police
African-Americans long have reported unequal treatment in society at large and in the criminal justice system specifically – the latter echoing President Obama's comments last night on the Henry Louis Gates Jr. incident in Cambridge, Mass. . . .

David W. Moore 7/23
Obama, the Public, and Health Care
A recent ABC/Washington Post poll reported slipping support for President Obama's efforts to reform health care. ... The same poll also showed that, by a 55% to 43% margin, Americans support a health care reform plan that is roughly what the president is requesting. . . .

Lori Weigel (Public Opinion Strategies) 7/22
Winning Back Pleasantville
... The movie Pleasantville was released in 1998, and the transformation that two teens from the future unwittingly rendered in a 1950s suburb in that movie is nothing compared to the political transformation that has occurred in the Colorado suburban landscape since the year of that movie's release. . . . [From the current issues of The Polling Report.]

Mark Mellman 7/22
Voters settle on a public plan
Sometimes Washington reveals just how detached it is by transforming an issue that is settled in the public mind into a matter of great controversy and contention. Ask anyone here to list the polarizing issues in the healthcare debate and the "public option" will shoot to the top. . . .

ABC News 7/22
Obama and the Health Care Hurdles
When President Obama lays it on the line tonight with a primetime news conference pushing health care reform, part of his message may be to invoke, as politicians do, the will of the people. We got a preview yesterday; in a Rose Garden appearance, the president said, "the American people understand that the status quo is unacceptable." Were it that simple. . . .

New York Times 7/21
2008 Surge in Black Voters Nearly Erased Racial Gap
In last year's presidential election, younger blacks voted in greater proportions than whites for the first time and black women turned out at a higher rate than any other racial, ethnic and gender group, a census analysis released Monday confirmed. As a result, in the election that produced the nation's first black president, the historic gap between black and white voter participation rates over all virtually evaporated. . . .

Gallup 7/20
Obama Job Approval Trends Downward in Second Qtr
Barack Obama's second quarter as U.S. president, spanning April 20-July 19, began with some of the highest approval ratings of his presidency, but these slumped a bit near the end of the quarter, including a term-low 56% approval rating in July 5-7 polling. Overall, he averaged 62% approval for the quarter. . . .

Washington Post 7/20
Obama Slipping on Key Issues
Heading into a critical period in the debate over health-care reform, public approval of President Obama's stewardship on the issue has dropped below the 50 percent threshold for the first time, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Bill Greener 7/20
My GOP: Too old, too white to win
Republicans can engage in complicated studies to determine the standing of our brand. ... Until we come to grips with some fundamental math, however, the numbers simply do not add up to the GOP prevailing in a national election any time soon. . . .

CBS News 7/16
To Confirm or Not to Confirm
In the latest CBS News Poll, conducted just before Judge Sonia Sotomayor's Senate confirmation hearings began, a quarter of Americans said they had a favorable opinion of the Supreme Court nominee and 15% were unfavorable -- but most Americans had yet to form an opinion. That's not unusual; the confirmation hearings are often the first opportunity Americans have to learn about a nominee's judicial approach and positions on some issues. . . .

Mark Mellman 7/15
What do voters want?
What do voters want from healthcare reform? I've answered variants of this question hundreds of times over the last two decades and my answer has been consistent. . . .

David Hill 7/15
King of Pop's Palin lesson
Sarah Palin could learn a lot from two unexpected role models: Michael Jackson and Barack Obama. Both are making a case for the proposition that work-related accomplishments are ultimately more determinative than personal image when it comes to a public figure's favorability. . . .

ABC News 7/15
The Other Moon Walk
The moon landing 40 years ago Monday has gained popularity with the distance of time, with initial objections about its cost giving way to a broader endorsement of the value of the space program. But price sensitivity remains high, a cautionary note for future efforts. . . .

USA Today 7/14
Americans want health care bill, but not the cost
Most Americans say it's important to overhaul health care this year, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds, but they are less enthusiastic about some of the proposals to pay for it. . . .

CBS News 7/14
Obama Approval Rating Slips to 57%
President Obama's approval rating has fallen six points in the past month, a new CBS News poll finds, amid growing skepticism about his handling of the economy and questions about the impact of the stimulus package. . . .

Gallup 7/13
Marriage Remains Key Predictor of Party ID
A Gallup analysis of more than 29,000 interviews conducted in June highlights a continuing and significant marriage gap in party identification. . . .

Stuart Rothenberg 7/13
GOP Strategists Seek to Alter Health Care Debate
... With an OnMessage Inc. poll of 2,200 likely voters in hand, GOP strategists now believe they have the ammunition they need to engage President Barack Obama and Democratic Congressional leaders more effectively on the health care debate. . . .

Pew Research Center 7/9
Public Praises Science; Scientists Fault Public, Media
Americans like science. Overwhelming majorities say that science has had a positive effect on society and that science has made life easier for most people. Most also say that government investments in science, as well as engineering and technology, pay off in the long run. . . .

Gallup 7/8
Obama Averages 61% Job Approval in June
U.S. President Barack Obama averaged a 61% job approval rating for the month of June, down from his 65% average in May, and one point below his previous monthly low of 62%, recorded in March. . . .

Gallup 7/7
Americans Sour on Russia
As President Barack Obama meets with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in Moscow this week, a review of 2009 Gallup data shows that 53% of Americans have an unfavorable view of Russia and 34% of Russians negatively assess the performance of the leadership of the United States. . . .

WorldPublicOpinion.org 7/7
Still Much Criticism of U.S. Foreign Policy
A new WorldPublicOpinion.org poll finds that around the world U.S. foreign policy continues to receive heavy criticism on a variety of fronts, even though in 13 of 19 nations most people say they have confidence in President Obama to do the right thing in international affairs. . . ..

Gallup 7/5
Obama Honeymoon Continues
Presidents typically enjoy positive approval ratings during the early stages of their presidencies, commonly known as the "honeymoon" period. Barack Obama is no exception, with ratings that have generally been above 60%. . . .

Washington Post 6/28
Most Americans Want Sotomayor on Court
A sizable majority of Americans want the Senate to confirm Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, and most call her "about right" ideologically, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Democracy Corps 6/25
Creating a Sustainable Majority for Health Care Reform
Over the last month, Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner have conducted two national surveys and six focus groups exploring the dynamics of the battle over health care reform. The results show that the country wants reform but is largely uncommitted on the plans being developed in Washington. . . .

Washington Post 6/25
Gallup Poll Chairman 'Could Smell Out a Bad Question'
Alec Gallup, 81, who served as chairman of his family's business, the Gallup Poll, which was started by his father and is considered among the most-trusted political polls in the United States, died of a heart ailment June 22 at his home in Princeton, N.J. . . .

Washington Post 6/25
Limits on Emissions Have Wide Support
Three-quarters of Americans think the federal government should regulate the release into the atmosphere of greenhouse gases from power plants, cars and factories to reduce global warming, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, with substantial majority support from Democrats, Republicans and independents. . . .

ABC News 6/24
Mark Sanford and the Affairs of State
Mark Sanford's behavior is, shall we say, not helpful politically -- particularly in the base. ... A far higher share of Republicans, 62 percent, said they'd be less likely to vote for a candidate who'd had an affair. That dropped to 37 percent of independents and 25 percent of Democrats. . . .

Washington Post 6/24
Most Want Health Reform But Fear Its Side Effects
A majority of Americans see government action as critical to controlling runaway health-care costs, but there is broad public anxiety about the potential impact of reform legislation and conflicting views about the types of fixes being proposed on Capitol Hill, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Washington Post 6/23
Americans Less Upbeat About Stimulus Bill's Impact
Expectations for President Obama's stimulus package have diminished, with barely half of Americans now confident the $787 billion measure will boost the economy, and the rapid rise in optimism that followed the 2008 election has abated, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Resurgent Republic (pdf) 6/23
Vulnerabilities in Democratic Health Care Proposals
Voters overwhelmingly agree that reforming health care is important but are concerned about Democratic proposals that increase federal debt, add new taxes and push those with private insurance to a public plan. The findings, according to a newly released Resurgent Republic survey, find Democrats on one side of the issue with Independents and Republicans on the other. . . .

New York Times 6/21
Wide Support for Government-Run Health
Americans overwhelmingly support substantial changes to the health care system and are strongly behind one of the most contentious proposals Congress is considering, a government-run insurance plan to compete with private insurers, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. . . .

Los Angeles Times 6/21
Villaraigosa's future, once bright, looks dimmer now
Days from the start of his second term, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has earned tepid job approval ratings from city voters, and a plurality opposes his entrance into the upcoming race for governor, according to a new Los Angeles Times poll. . . .

Pew Research Center 6/19
Public More Optimistic About the Economy
The public is increasingly optimistic that the nation's economy will improve in the next year, while a growing number also expect their personal finances to get better. But this has not caused people to open their wallets. . . .

Los Angeles Times 6/19
Los Angeles: Big racial, ethnic divide on gay marriage
In the state's continuing political battles over gay marriage, both sides are targeting Latino voters, and a new Los Angeles Times poll illustrates why. . . .

Larry J. Sabato 6/18
Off-Year Elections
Director, U.Va. Center for Politics
... Six months after a president is chosen, the political community has the shakes, and begs for votes, real votes, any votes. And that is why New Jersey's and Virginia's contests for governor always assume a larger role than their actual importance merits. . . .

New York Times 6/18
Obama Is Seen as Ineffective on the Economy
A substantial majority of Americans say President Obama has not developed a strategy to deal with the budget deficit, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll, which also found that support for his plans to overhaul health care, rescue the auto industry and close the prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, falls well below his job approval ratings. . . .

MSNBC 6/18
Public increasingly concerned about deficit
As the young Obama administration spends trillions of dollars in its effort to turn around the nation’s economy and revive the U.S. auto industry, the American public is growing concerned about the size of the budget deficit and the government’s intervention into the private sector, the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll finds. . . ..

Gallup 6/17
Americans Trust Physicians Over Politicians
Nearly three-quarters of Americans (73%) say they are confident in doctors to recommend the right thing for reforming the U.S. healthcare system. That is significantly higher than the public confidence extended to President Barack Obama, as well as to six other entities that will be weighing in during the emerging healthcare reform debate. . . .

EBRI (pdf) 6/15
Health Confidence Survey
Even before details have been released regarding health insurance market reform, the availability of a public plan option, mandates on employers and individuals, subsidized coverage for the low-income population, changes to the tax treatment of job-based health benefits, and regulatory oversight of health care, public support is starting to emerge. . . .

Stanley B. Greenberg 6/15
Health Care Reform: Repeat the Question
Nothing brings on a headache quite like health care reform. My head has throbbed lately, as Congress has begun to consider a serious overhaul -- a debate that forces me to recall the painful last time we embarked on a similar effort some 16 years ago. . . .

ABC News 6/15
Iran's Election: The Odds of Fraud
An outfit called Terror Free Tomorrow claims in an op-ed in today's Washington Post that the contested Iranian elections likely were not fraudulent, since a pre-election poll it sponsored showed the declared winner, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, with a big lead. TFT's own data, though, tell a different story – as, oddly, did its own previous polling analysis. . . .

Dan Balz 6/14
For Republicans, the Forces Aren't With Them
... For the past few months, political analysts and demographers have been poring over the results of the 2008 election and comparing them with presidential results from the past two decades. From whatever angle of their approach -- age, race, economic status, geography -- they have come to a remarkably similar conclusion. Almost all indicators are pressing the Republicans into minority status. . . .

Mike Murphy 6/14
The Ice Age Cometh
Despairing Republican friends have been asking me what I think we should do to rebuild the GOP and begin our certain and inevitable comeback. My answer disappoints them: "Build an ark." . . .

David Hill 6/10
Long-term campaign planning
How far can campaigns plan in advance these days? It seems like the planning horizon is getting shorter each election cycle. And it's going to change how we poll. . . .

USA Today 6/10
Most don't know who speaks for GOP
Republicans, out of power and divided over how to get it back, are finding even the most basic questions hard to answer. Here's one: Who speaks for the GOP? The question flummoxes most Americans, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds, which is among the reasons for the party's sagging state and uncertain direction. . . .

New York Times 6/9
Poll Finds Lukewarm Support for Mayor Bloomberg
Despite generally broad approval for the job Michael R. Bloomberg has done as mayor, a majority of New Yorkers say that he does not deserve another term in office and that they would like to give someone else a chance, according to a poll conducted by The New York Times, Cornell University and NY1 News. . . .

Political Science Quarterly: Gary C. Jacobson 6/8
The 2008 Elections
The 2008 election extended the national trend that had given control of Congress to the Democrats in the 2006 midterm two years earlier. The election was again essentially a referendum on the George W. Bush administration, but this time the referendum also encompassed a presidential election. . . .

William Galston 6/5
Why Won't Obama Tell Us About Cost of Health Care?
As health care reform enters the phase of serious legislation, it becomes vital to understand what the American people expect and believe ... and how the forthcoming debate is likely to affect their views. . . .

Gallup 6/5
Conservatives in Favor of Openly Gay Service Members
Americans are six percentage points more likely than they were four years ago to favor allowing openly gay men and lesbian women to serve in the military, 69% to 63%. While liberals and Democrats remain the most supportive, the biggest increase in support has been among conservatives and weekly churchgoers -- up 12 and 11 percentage points, respectively. . . .

ABC News 6/5
Affirmative Action: Words Matter
Do you generally favor or oppose affirmative action programs for racial and ethnic minorities? Let me put that another way . . . .

Democracy Corps 6/4
Debates in Washington Threaten to Further Isolate GOP
... [T]wo of the most high-profile debates in Washington could damage the GOP further by isolating the party from the vast middle of the electorate as Obama's nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court receives better than two-to-one backing, even after the initial onslaught of Republican attacks against the nominee, and former Vice President Dick Cheney’s popularity falls to an all-time low. . . .

WorldPublicOpinion.org 6/3
Egyptian Public to Greet Obama With Suspicion
A new WorldPublicOpinion.org poll finds Egyptians continue to view US foreign policy quite negatively and see President Obama as closely aligned with it. At the same time, Obama has much better ratings than Bush had, and there are signs of thawing feelings toward the US. . . .

America's Voice / Pete Brodnitz (pdf) 6/3
Recent Polling on Immigration Reform
While comprehensive immigration reform has some vocal opponents, in our recent national poll, we found that the vast majority of voters (two thirds or more depending on the details) favor comprehensive immigration reform, a position that has not wavered in the face of an economic downturn. . . ..

Gallup 6/2
Service Employees Rate Obama Highest
President Barack Obama's job approval rating averaged 65% in Gallup Poll Daily tracking in May . . . . On the high end, 71% of service workers, such as police officers, waiters and waitresses, barbers, and nurses' aides, approved in May of how Obama handled his job. . . .

ABC News 6/2
What We Don't Know About China
What's most interesting about public opinion in China, 20 years after Tiananmen Square, is what’s not asked there. Think about, say, confidence in the national government, elections, the military and the judicial system; views of national leaders; or satisfaction with personal freedom of speech, assembly and religion – in short, the stock in trade of many public opinion surveys. . . .

Change to Win / Lake Research (pdf) 6/1
The Working American Dream Agenda
... Working Americans firmly reject the ideological frame that government should get out of the way. They want government to be a partner and invest in good jobs, health care, and educational opportunity. . . .

Hoover Institution: Education Next 6/1
Educating the Public
Most people express strong opinions about public education. But only a few know the basic facts about the public schools: how much they spend, how well teachers are paid, and what schools can and cannot do. What happens when the public learns the facts about schools and deliberates responsibly about public education? . . .

Gallup 6/1
GOP Base Heavily White, Conservative, Religious
More than 6 in 10 Republicans today are white conservatives, while most of the rest are whites with other ideological leanings; only 11% of Republicans are Hispanics, or are blacks or members of other races. . . .

Drew Westen 6/1
Obama Should Welcome a Discussion of Social Issues
... On every issue we have studied, from abortion to immigration, a well-refined progressive narrative, designed to speak to the hearts and minds of the American people in their language, not the language of activists and advocates, can beat the strongest of conservative messages nationally by 15-20 points. . . .

Washington Post 6/1
The Next Frontier: Decoding the Internet's Raw Data
There's no shortage of uses for the massive amounts of data in every nook and cranny of the Internet. ... The problem is figuring out how to organize and display the data in a useful and informative way, instead of forcing people to sift through heaps of mind-numbing spreadsheets. . . .

New York Times 5/31
Clive Granger, Economist, Dies at 74
Clive W. J. Granger, an economist and Nobel laureate whose work revolutionized the way stocks and other fluctuating series of data are analyzed and forecast, died on May 27. ... [I]t was an early revelation about time series data -- sets of data that are collected over time, like daily stock prices, interest rates and consumer spending habits -- that earned him his greatest honor. . . .

Gallup 5/29
Obama Approval Compares Favorably to Predecessors
So far in May, Barack Obama has averaged 65% job approval. Since World War II, only three of the previous eight presidents elected to their first terms -- Dwight Eisenhower, John Kennedy, and Ronald Reagan -- have had a higher average approval rating in May of their first year. . . .

Sacramento Bee 5/28
Anti-Prop. 8 forces should wait, pollsters say
With the ink barely dry on the California Supreme Court's decision upholding a ban on same-sex marriages, proponents are already preparing new political and legal efforts to overturn the ban. But at least some pollsters and legal experts think those efforts may be too soon to have a good chance to succeed. . . .

Gallup 5/28
Positive Initial Reaction to Sotomayor Nomination
Americans' first reactions to the news of President Obama's nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court are decidedly more positive than negative, with 47% rating the nomination as "excellent" or "good," 20% rating it "only fair," and 13% rating it "poor." . . .

Moore Information 5/28
Checks and Balances are Still Important
Our recent nationwide voter survey reveals Republicans continue to trail Democrats in the traditional congressional generic ballot measurement, but that Democrat edge does not trump voters' fundamental desire for partisan checks and balances in our government. . . .

Rhodes Cook 5/28
For GOP's Sake, Texas Better Not Secede
Of all the jaw-dropping comments made by politicians this year, the one that takes top prize was not uttered in the nation's capital but deep in the heart of Texas. There, in conjunction with a tax day "tea party," Republican Gov. Rick Perry floated the idea of his huge state along the Mexican border seceding from the Union. ... As a political matter, it would be about the worst thing that could possibly happen to Perry's Republican Party at a time that it holds neither end of Pennsylvania Avenue and is a receding force in many states. . . .

David Hill 5/27
GOP reform would net independents
... [I]ndependents have assumed what Pew calls "center stage" in the American political drama. If Republicans are game, almost four in 10 voters are waiting for the spotlight, begging for the affections of the two parties. . . .

ABC News 5/26
Supreme Court Pick: The Public Perspective
While we can count on interest groups across the political spectrum to swarm all over President Obama’s Supreme Court pick, Americans themselves have very little in the way of demands: a smart judge, and not too ideological, if you please. . . .

Mark Baldassare 5/26
Next steps for California
As the governor and Legislature chart the course for California's fiscal future, the state's elected officials are saying they got the message and will follow the will of the people as they balance the budget. What they are overlooking in the aftermath of the overwhelming defeat of their ballot measures is that the special-election results have little to say about the tax-and-spending preferences of Californians today. . . .

Gallup 5/25
Military Veterans Tend to Be More Republican
Veterans are more likely to be Republican than are those of comparable ages who are not veterans. This Republican skew is at least minimally evident across all age groups, ranging from a 15-point difference in the percentage Republican between veterans and nonveterans in the 25-29 age group, to a 2-point difference in the 85+ group. . . .

New York Times 5/21
Tracking Public Opinion on Abortion: It's Tricky
Every now and then a single polling result on a particular issue is broadly seized upon by the media and pundits, as well as by proponents and opponents alike on the issue – either to advance an agenda or to reveal flaws in the poll. Sometimes both motives operate in tandem. . . .

Pew Research Center 5/21
Independents Take Center Stage in Obama Era
Centrism has emerged as a dominant factor in public opinion as the Obama era begins. The political values and core attitudes that the Pew Research Center has monitored since 1987 show little overall ideological movement. . . .

Democracy Corps 5/19
Obama Closes the Democrats' National Security Gap
A new Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner survey shows that after 100 days in office, President Barack Obama has, at least for now, effectively erased doubts that Americans have historically harbored about the Democratic Party's vision and competence on national security. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation 5/19
The Experts vs. The Public on Health Reform
In repeated Kaiser polls, we see a divide between what experts believe and what the public believes about some of the key issues in health reform. They don't disagree on everything; far from it. But there is a wide gulf on basic beliefs about what is behind the problems in the health care system and key elements of reform, especially delivery reform. . . .

CBS News 5/19
Pessimism Over Children's Prospects
The current economic recession has led parents to harbor strong doubts about the next generation's quality of life in the future, a new CBS News poll reveals. . . .

Gallup 5/18
GOP Losses Span Nearly All Demographic Groups
The decline in Republican Party affiliation among Americans in recent years is well documented, but a Gallup analysis now shows that this movement away from the GOP has occurred among nearly every major demographic subgroup. . . .

ABC News 5/18
Public Opinion on Abortion: No Easy Answer
Just on cue with President Obama's visit to Notre Dame yesterday, public opinion on abortion is looking even more conflicted than usual. As the president himself suggested, it's a highly fraught subject - and one of those on which a single polling number does not begin to describe the complexity of Americans' attitudes. . . .

NPR 5/18
Take Our Survey: Are There Too Many Surveys?
Thanks for reading this article on the outrageous proliferation of surveys in contemporary America. ... To help us sort through the surge of surveys, please take just a few minutes to complete the following survey. . . .

Gallup 5/18
Americans Consider Crossing Borders for Medical Care
... A recent Gallup Poll finds that up to 29% of Americans would consider traveling abroad for medical procedures such as heart bypass surgery, hip or knee replacement, plastic surgery, cancer diagnosis and treatment, or alternative medical care, even though all are routinely done in the United States. . . .

Resurgent Republic 5/16
Public, Political Left At Odds Over Interrogation
On May 11-14, 2009, Resurgent Republic conducted an extensive survey of registered voters regarding the current debate over harsh interrogations of high-value al-Qaeda detainees. ... American voters believe "harsh interrogation of detainees" was justified by a 19-point margin, 53 to 34 percent. . . .

Gallup 5/11
Obama Approval Picks Up in May
President Barack Obama appears to be slightly more popular with Americans at the start of his second 100 days in office than he was, on average, during his first 100. . . .

Los Angeles Times 5/11
CA: Naturalized citizens to reshape political landscape
More than 1 million immigrants became U.S. citizens last year, the largest surge in history, hastening the ethnic transformation of California's political landscape with more Latinos and Asians now eligible to vote. . . .

Gallup 5/6
Republicans Face Steep Uphill Climb Among Women
Among women, Democrats maintain a solid double-digit advantage in party identification over Republicans, 41% to 27%. In contrast, men are equally divided in their party loyalty between Republicans (28%) and Democrats (30%), and are currently most likely to say they are politically independent (40%). . . .

Alan Abramowitz 5/1
The Obama Generation
... In this article I present evidence from the 2008 American National Election Study that support for Barack Obama by younger Americans was not based primarily on Mr. Obama's personality, style or celebrity status. To a greater extent than among older voters, support for Obama among voters under the age of 30 was based on issues and ideology. . . .

Pew Research Center 4/30
Dissecting the 2008 Electorate
The electorate in last year's presidential election was the most racially and ethnically diverse in U.S. history, with nearly one-in-four votes cast by non-whites, according to a new analysis of Census Bureau data by the Pew Research Center. . . .

Resurgent Republic 4/29
Independents Side with Republicans on Obama Budget
This first Resurgent Republic survey ... shows that President Obama remains quite popular, with 61% approving of his job performance and 32% disapproving so far. ... This survey verifies that America remains a center-right country. . . .

Democracy Corps (pdf) 4/29
Americans See a Lot to Appreciate in First 100 Days
We are not going to try to compete with the superlatives about President Obama's first 100 days. Instead, we simply want to underscore the nuanced but interesting picture people have of his leadership, direction and progress in key areas, as well as concerns about the spending deficits necessary to address the current crisis. . . .

Gallup 4/29
At 100 Days, Obama Approval Broad as Well as Deep
... The new president's approval rating at the 100-day mark is notable in that nearly all major demographic categories of Americans are pleased with his job performance, as evidenced by approval ratings above the majority level. . . .

Mark Mellman 4/29
Wide support for EFCA's principles
Because few issues have generated quite as much controversy in the halls of Congress as the Employee Free Choice Act, you could be forgiven for assuming EFCA is extremely controversial with the public. It's not. While EFCA has captured the attention of relatively few Americans, its principles are widely supported. . . .

Ipsos 4/29
Obama: Overwhelming support from Hispanics
President Barack Obama hits the highly anticipated 100-day milestone of his presidency with overwhelming support from the U.S. Hispanic population. . . .

Democracy Corps 4/28
New Surveys Show Republicans in Disarray
In announcing his intention to leave the Republican Party, Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter said, "Since my election in 1980, as part of the Reagan Big Tent, the Republican Party has moved far to the right. ... I now find my political philosophy more in line with Democrats than Republicans." Two new surveys from Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner show that this sentiment is shared by a sizeable majority of voters as well. . . .

Democracy Corps 4/27
Congressional Battleground a Surprise at 100 Days
A new survey by Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research in the 40 most marginal Democratic seats shows Democratic incumbents holding strong in the territory where nearly all expect Republicans to reclaim lost ground. . . .

Gallup 4/27
Slim Majority Wants Interrogations Investigated
A new Gallup Poll finds 51% of Americans in favor and 42% opposed to an investigation into the use of harsh interrogation techniques on terrorism suspects during the Bush administration. . . .

ABC News 4/27
Broad Backing for Cuba Relations
President Obama’s overtures to Cuba are one of the ways he’s hit the zeitgeist in his first 100 days: Six in 10 Americans approve of the way he’s handling U.S. relations with the island nation, and most favor far more dramatic moves. . . .

Star Tribune 4/26
Minnesota Poll: Most want Coleman to call it quits
Nearly two-thirds of Minnesotans surveyed think Norm Coleman should concede the U.S. Senate race to Al Franken, but just as many believe the voting system that gave the state its longest running election contest needs improvement. . . .

Washington Post 4/26
Obama Off to Solid Start, Poll Finds
Barack Obama's performance in the first 100 days of his presidency draws strong public approval in a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, but there is decidedly less support for his recent decision to release previously secret government memos on the interrogation of terrorism suspects, an initiative that reveals deep partisan fissures. . . .

FOX News 4/24
Obama's First 100 Days
As Barack Obama closes in on his first 100 days as president, majorities of Americans approve of the job he is doing, are satisfied with what he has accomplished so far and think he is keeping his promises, according to a FOX News poll released Friday. . . .

National Journal: Ron Brownstein 4/24
Obama and the Swells
As President Obama approaches the 100-day mark, one of his principal political assets is the breadth of his public approval. One of his principal challenges may be extending that personal support to his agenda. . . .

Pew 4/23
Obama at 100 Days
As he approaches the 100-day mark of his presidency, Barack Obama's job approval ratings are higher than those of his most recent predecessors. However, the 44th president is even more distinguished by his strong personal popularity. . . .

ABC News 4/23
Obama, Cheney and the Politics of Torture
Dick Cheney's pushback on torture this week is well-calibrated: It's an issue on which public sentiment is somewhat more equivocal than President Obama's own view. While most people oppose torture, that view is short of monolithic -- and opposition softens if it's presumed actually to work, as the former vice president argues. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation (pdf) 4/23
Many Americans Still Delaying Health Care
As the economy continues to falter, a majority of Americans continue to say they or someone in their household have taken steps to put off health care for cost reasons over the course of the last year. . . .

NPR 4/22
Public Questions Digital Fix For Health Care
There's a big disconnect between American opinions about fixing the health care system and the view of experts and politicians, according to a new poll by NPR, the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health. . . .

Gallup 4/22
Opinions About Global Warming Vary Worldwide
Gallup Polls conducted in 127 countries in 2007 and 2008 reveal that more than a third of the world's population has never heard of global warming. . . .

New York Times: Andrew Kohut 4/22
Will Obama Ride Reagan's Ratings Roller Coaster?
... A close look at Gallup's polling of reactions to Reagan's first few months in office provides striking parallels with what Pew Research Center polls now find about opinions of Mr. Obama. And a consideration of the Reagan experience may well give some clues as to what lies ahead for the 44th president. . . .

ABC News 4/21
Behind the Plus or Minus
A bunch of respectable news outlets yesterday published reports on an academic survey claiming to measure "video-game addiction" among youngsters. "This study’s primary strength," the author reported, "is that it is nationally representative within 3%." I beg to differ. . . .

Los Angeles Times 4/21
Measuring Obama by FDR's yardstick
If it seems arbitrary -- even unfair -- to take the measure of a new president after just 100 days in office, you can blame Franklin D. Roosevelt. . . .

New York Times 4/20
Cuban-Americans Favor Obama's Shift in Policy
President Obama has drawn fire from some Republicans for his just-completed trip to Latin America, but his administration's outreach to Cuba may have impressed one politically important group back home: Cuban-Americans. . . .

Calbuzz 4/20
Five Questions with Merv Field
Mervin Field is the pioneering founder of the Field Poll, an independent, nonpartisan, public opinion survey that has tracked every state election in California since 1948. The man insiders call "The Swami" kindly took time to answer some Calbuzz questions. . . ..

Gallup 4/20
Americans Increasingly Concerned About Retirement
For the first time this decade, a majority of non-retired Americans, 52%, doubt they will have enough money to live comfortably once they retire; only 41% say they will. In 2002, by contrast, 59% of non-retirees were confident that they would have enough retirement income to live comfortably. . . .

Salon 4/20
Will gay marriage still work as a GOP wedge issue?
... As both a policy issue and a political hot potato, gay marriage is back in the news. Can opposition to gay marriage still help the Republicans on Election Day, or have we reached a tipping point? . . .

The Star-Ledger 4/19
Jersey pollster was unconventional choice for Obama
The mission was to find the best, it didn't matter where. ... Bearded, brash, impossible to ignore, eager to argue, quick with a four-letter word, [Joel] Benenson was anything but the conventional choice. . . .

Gallup 4/17
Obama Averages 63% Approval in His First Quarter
Barack Obama's first quarter in office concludes on Sunday, and during this early stage of his presidency he has averaged a solid 63% job approval, reaching as high as 69% in the initial days of his presidency and falling as low as 59% on a few occasions. . . .

UVA: Alan Abramowitz 4/16
Independent Voters and the President
The importance of partisanship in contemporary American politics is widely recognized. ... However, the assumption that independents are non-aligned -- that they are free thinkers who have no predisposition to support one party or the other -- is inaccurate and misleading. . . .

UVA: Rhodes Cook 4/16
Obama and the Redefinition of Presidential Coattails
Barack Obama showed considerable vote-getting ability in last fall's presidential election, with a clear-cut win in both popular and electoral votes. But when it came to presidential coattails, his were of the same modest length of many of his immediate predecessors. . . .

Pew Internet & American Life Project 4/16
The Internet's Role in Campaign 2008
Some 74% of internet users -- representing 55% of the entire adult population -- went online in 2008 to get involved in the political process or to get news and information about the election. . . .

WorldPublicOpinion.org 4/15
Americans Favor New Approach to Cuba
A majority of Americans feel that it is time to try a new approach to Cuba, according to a national poll by WorldPublicOpinion.org. More specifically, the public favors lifting the ban on travel to Cuba for Americans and re-establishing diplomatic relations as well as other changes. . . .

ABC News 4/15
Of Taxes and Tea
Today's "taxpayer tea parties" may reinforce a sense of purpose among conservative activists -- but at the moment they’re unlikely to resonate beyond. Recent polling shows little in the way of broad concern about taxes in general or Barack Obama's approach to them. . . .

ABC News 4/14
Obama, the Economy . . . and Thin Ice
President Obama may be encouraged enough by some rising measures of consumer confidence to celebrate those improvements in his economic speech today. It's a place where he'd best tread lightly. . . .

Washington Post 4/11
Changing Red-Blue Divisions Difficult for Obama
President Obama has already made a down payment on many of his campaign promises . But a noisy and partisan debate has erupted over whether he has even begun to make good on his pledge to turn the page on the divisive politics of the past. . . .

National Journal: Charlie Cook 4/11
Who'll Play Defense?
... Midterm elections are usually a referendum on the president and his party. And right now, President Obama is certainly no liability. . . .

UVA: Alan Abramowitz 4/9
The Transformation of the American Electorate
The election of America's first black president has been widely hailed as an historic event. However, much less attention has been paid to the demographic trends which made that event possible and which will continue to affect elections and politics in the United States far into the future. . . .

UVA: Rhodes Cook 4/9
The GOP in New York: Going the Way of the Dinosaurs?
... A half century or so ago, when Nelson Rockefeller was in his heyday, New York Republicans battled with their Democratic counterparts on even terms. But nowadays, even a sense of competitiveness is a distant memory. . . .

The Democratic Strategist: Andrew Levison (pdf) 4/9
Strategy Memo: American Political Ideology
The new report from the Center for American Progress, The State of American Political Ideology 2009, provides a more finely crafted overall picture of the current balance between support for conservative and liberal-progressive principles in the American electorate than any recent study. As a result, it establishes a vital starting point for the development of progressive and Democratic strategy. . . .

National Journal: Charlie Cook 4/8
Watch the Independents
It's hard to write a column about politics these days without coming back to the issue of partisanship. It must be one of the most recurrent themes, if not the most, in American politics today. . . .

Gallup 4/8
Satisfaction Ratings Continue Slow, Steady Climb
Americans' reported satisfaction with the way things are going in the country remains decidedly negative, but has slowly and steadily improved in recent weeks. . . .

The Hill: Mark Mellman 4/8
When polls go wrong
Last week, my friend and distinguished sparring partner in these pages, David Hill, commented on the American Association of Public Opinion Research's (AAPOR) report on what went wrong with the polling in New Hampshire’s presidential primary. This compendium of potential polling problems is so important that I am going to add my perspective as well. . . .

The Hill: David Hill 4/8
Crafting ID between the commas
It's a crucial time for molding images of emerging candidacies. The most important task for first-time candidates is to control what I call their "between-the-commas" identification, those magic few words that follow their name, telling voters who they are, as in, "Today on the state capitol steps John Doe, 45, a businessman from Boise, announced his intent to run for governor."

Gallup 4/7
Obama Approval Rating Stable, Polarized
... Still enjoying a honeymoon period, Obama's approval rating has fallen only slightly from its 67% starting point even as he has outlined an ambitious agenda that has been controversial to some with regard to the costs to taxpayers and the proposed expansion of the federal government's role in the economy. . . .

New York Times 4/7
'Survey' Calls Attack Bloomberg Rival
... As his campaign sought to overpower any candidate considering challenging him, Mr. Bloomberg commissioned a telephone poll last month that spread derogatory information about Representative Anthony D. Weiner, one of the mayor's possible rivals in the race. . . .

ABC News 4/7
Obama in Iraq
In his visit today to Iraq President Obama will find a place where conditions have improved dramatically and public attitudes have followed, per our ABC/BBC/NHK poll there -- but where the United States gets little credit, and relatively few expect Obama to make much difference. . . .

New York Times 4/7
New Optimism on Economy Since Inauguration
Americans have grown more optimistic about the economy and the direction of the country in the 11 weeks since President Obama was inaugurated, suggesting that he is enjoying some success in his critical task of rebuilding the nation’s confidence, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. . . .

Gallup 4/6
Newer Threats On Par With Ongoing Conflicts
In a sign of the times, Americans are now about as concerned about Iran's and North Korea's nuclear capabilities and drug violence in Mexico as they are about the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, and international terrorism in general. . . .

Washington Post 4/6
Most Back Outreach to Muslims
Most Americans think President Obama's pledge to "seek a new way forward" with the Muslim world is an important goal, even as nearly half hold negative views about Islam and a sizable number say that even mainstream adherents to the religion encourage violence against non-Muslims, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

S.F. Chronicle 4/4
California Dems target 8 GOP districts
California GOP voter registration is "dropping like a rock," a new study shows, declining so fast that Democratic Party officials see an unprecedented opportunity to gain voters and House seats in the 2010 election. . . .

Public Agenda 4/3
Americans Support Wide Array of Energy Policies
Despite partisan debate, the American people find common ground on their support for a number of measures to address the nation's energy problems. ... But the public may not yet be prepared for the tradeoffs and challenges needed to make these proposals a reality. . . .

Washington Post 4/3
Obama Chooses Survey Expert to Run Census Bureau
President Obama has picked Robert M. Groves, a prominent survey researcher, to lead the Census Bureau, less than a year before the 2010 census begins. . . ..

UVA: Rhodes Cook 4/2
California: The Key to the Electoral Lock
California may be the Golden State, but it has been a while since people have called it that without a trace of sarcasm. With its double digit unemployment rate, difficult to balance budget, and crumbling infrastructure, California these days is anything but golden. That is, with the exception of its mother lode of electoral votes. . . .

Washington Post 4/2
Recession Taking Emotional Toll
Consumers are keeping their wallets in their pockets and feeling increasingly anxious because of the recession, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. Many report putting off big-ticket spending that could benefit the hard-hit automotive and travel industries, while also cutting out everyday indulgences such as dining out. . . .

Democracy Corps 4/1
Voters Back Obama's Priorities, Agenda on Budget
A new survey by Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, completed on the eve on Congress' pending vote on President Obama's budget, shows increasing optimism among the electorate, sustained popularity for the president, and broad support for his priorities and approach to the budget, particularly when framed as a part of a long-term economic program. . . .

The Hill: Mark Mellman 4/1
A GOP leadership this Dem likes
... [W]hatever the outcome of the special election, the GOP continues to be a rolling train wreck that has been decimated in two successive election cycles and whose geographic and ideological isolation has given rise to a leadership seemingly intent on destroying what is left of its once-grand party. . . .

The Hill: David Hill 4/1
Robo-polls officially endorsed
The ecumenical product of a committee that included academics as well as public and private pollsters, this study is the best systematic analysis of what works and what doesn't for pollsters since Irving Crespi's useful but now almost-forgotten 1988 book for the Russell Sage Foundation, Pre-Election Polling: Sources of Accuracy and Error. . . .

Washington Post 3/31
Blame for Downturn Not Fixed on Obama
The number of Americans who believe that the nation is headed in the right direction has roughly tripled since Barack Obama's election, and the public overwhelmingly blames the excesses of the financial industry, rather than the new president, for turmoil in the economy, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

ABC News 3/31
Michelle Obama: Bragging Rights
There's some pretty good news for Barack Obama in our latest ABC/Post poll out this morning – a 66% job approval rating and advances in views of the nation's direction. But he might not brag on it at the dinner table: There are even better results for his wife. . . .

WorldPublicOpinion.org 3/31
Global Poll: Economic System Needs 'Major Changes'
Major reform of the international economic system is needed in order to solve the current crisis, according to a new global poll of over 29,000 people carried out for BBC World Service. . . .

AAPOR (pdf) 3/30
Investigating the 2008 Presidential Primary Polls
After an extensive investigation, a committee of the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) has identified several factors that contributed to inaccuracies in 2008 Presidential Primary polls, most notably the miscalling of the New Hampshire Democratic primary. . . .

Gallup 3/30
Catholics Similar to Mainstream on Abortion, Stem Cells
Despite the Roman Catholic Church's official opposition to abortion and embryonic stem-cell research, a Gallup analysis finds almost no difference between rank-and-file American Catholics and American non-Catholics in terms of finding the two issues morally acceptable. . . .

Council for Research Excellence 3/26
Video Consumer Mapping Study
A pioneering study conducted on behalf of the Nielsen-funded Council for Research Excellence (CRE) by Ball State University's Center for Media Design (CMD) and Sequent Partners dispels several popular notions about video media use, finding that younger baby boomers (age 45-54) consume the most video media while confirming that traditional "live" television remains the proverbial "800-pound gorilla" in the video media arena. . . .

Pew 3/26
Wide Gap in 'Satisfaction,' 'Right Direction' Measures
... [S]ince last fall's election, the percentage saying the country is generally headed in the right direction has consistently surpassed the percentage expressing satisfaction with national conditions. . . .

New York Times 3/26
New Political Study Center? Turn Right at Berkeley
... [T]he University of California, Berkeley, where '60s-era students stood atop a police car and ignited free-speech protests, is creating a Center for the Comparative Study of Right-Wing Movements. . . .

New York Times: Thomas Friedman 3/25
Secrets of a Pollster
Stan Greenberg, one of America's most experienced pollsters, sums up the key lesson he learned polling for Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela, Ehud Barak and Tony Blair: "Bold leaders in tumultuous times always have at least one crash." . . .

The Hill: Mark Mellman 3/25
Hope is still alive
George W. Bush was undone in the first instance by his misguided pursuit of a war the American people came to believe was a serious mistake, while the economy delivered the fatal political blow to the former president and his party. On both major issues, changes wrought by President Obama and congressional Democrats are beginning to generate the promised hope. . . .

CBS News 3/23
Americans Want the Bonuses Back
Americans find it unacceptable for companies receiving federal bailout money to pay their employees bonuses, according to a new CBS News poll, and a majority say the government should try to recover the $165 million in bonus money recently paid to employees of insurance company AIG. . . .

Democracy Corps 3/23
Report on the Obama Generation
In a recent interview with Rachel Maddow, John McCain's daughter Meghan McCain warned her party that it was, "on the precipice of becoming irrelevant to young people." This conclusion comes in the wake of a 66 to 32 percent drubbing by young people in the 2008 elections. Our survey of young people taken three months after the election underscores the alienation of Republicans from the millennial generational. . . .

Democracy Corps 3/20
President, Democrats Strongly Preferred on Key Issues
As Washington prepares to fully engage in the debate over President Obama's budget, two new national surveys from Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner show that the president and his allies are well positioned to win the battle over his budget. . . .

Yale/George Mason (pdf) 3/19
Climate change in the American mind
In September and October of 2008 a research team from Yale and George Mason Universities conducted a nationally representative survey of 2,164 American adults. Survey participants were asked about their issue priorities for the new administration and Congress, support and opposition regarding climate change and energy policies, levels of political and consumer activism, and beliefs about the reality and risks of global warming. . . .

Pew Research Center 3/19
Most Support Health Care Overhaul
Most Americans believe that the nation's health care system is in need of substantial changes. But there is less support for completely rebuilding the health care system than there was in April 1993, during the early stage of the Clinton administration's unsuccessful effort to revamp health care. . . .

CBS News 3/18
Public Supports Aid To Homeowners
Americans are making clear distinctions between the Obama Administration's proposals to assist various sectors of the economy, according to a new CBS News poll. While a majority favors assisting struggling homeowners, most of those polled do not support additional federal assistance for U.S. automakers or for banks and financial institutions. . . .

NPR 3/17
More Voters Think U.S. Is On Right Track
A new NPR poll shows that President Obama's job approval rating is still high -- 59% -- and among likely voters surveyed, the Democratic position on issues was favored across the board. Still, there's some reason for Republicans to hope. . . .

Pew Research Center 3/16
Obama's Approval Rating Slips
President Barack Obama's approval rating has slipped, as a growing number of Americans see him listening more to his party's liberals than to its moderates and many voice opposition to some of his key economic proposals. . . .

calbuzz 3/16
Why Feinstein Won't Run for Governor of California
In 1987, then-Mayor Dianne Feinstein set off a civic soap opera in San Francisco, performing a public Hamlet act in weighing whether to seek the congressional seat made vacant by the death of U.S. Rep. Sala Burton, widow of legendary Congressman Phil Burton. . . .

Gallup 3/16
Obama's Approval Equal To or Better Than Bush's
President Barack Obama's job approval rating, at 61% in the latest three-day average of Gallup Poll Daily tracking, is slightly above where George W. Bush's and in particular Bill Clinton's were at this point in mid-March of the first years of their administrations. . . .

ABC News (pdf) 3/16
Dramatic Advances Sweep Iraq
Dramatic advances in public attitudes are sweeping Iraq, with declining violence, rising economic well-being and improved services lifting optimism, fueling confidence in public institutions and bolstering support for democracy. . . .

Pew 3/13
Stop the Presses?
As many newspapers struggle to stay economically viable, fewer than half of Americans (43%) say that losing their local newspaper would hurt civic life in their community "a lot." Even fewer (33%) say they would personally miss reading the local newspaper a lot if it were no longer available. . . .

The Atlantic: Jodie Allen & Richard Auxier 3/13
Socialism, American-Style
... Are Americans, the majority of whom still appear to support the Obama program, likely to quail at the prospect of a "Europeanization" of the land of the free that transforms it into a clone of, say, France? . . .

Pew (pdf) 3/12
Economic Mobility Project
... In the midst of an historic economic crisis, Americans insist that despite the recession it is still possible for people to improve their economic standing, and most believe that they control their economic destiny. . . .

Gallup 3/10
Stimulus Not Yet Improving Consumer Mood, Spending
Gallup's attitudinal economic measures show little if any improvement since President Obama signed historic fiscal stimulus legislation on Feb. 17. . . . .

Washington Post 3/9
15% of Americans Have No Religion
The percentage of Americans who call themselves Christians has dropped dramatically over the past two decades, and those who do are increasingly identifying themselves without traditional denomination labels, according to a major study of U.S. religion being released today. . . .

ABC News: The Numbers 3/5
Confidence to the Rescue? Don't Hold Your Breath.
With unemployment soaring to 8.1 percent in today's Labor Department report, it's fair to wonder when consumer confidence finally will lead the economy to recovery. The answer: Maybe never. . . .

L.A. Times: Harold Meyerson 3/5
As the GOP stands firm, Calif. is changing direction
... Republicans may be a clear minority in this state, but their lawmakers are so safe in their arch-conservative districts that they don't need to cooperate across the aisle. Or so goes the conventional wisdom. But there's a problem with this analysis: The fault line in California politics has shifted dramatically. And the state's Republicans haven't yet noticed. . . .

Pew Research Center: Scott Keeter 3/5
New Tricks for Old -- and New -- Dogs
... Communication research is in a period of transformation. Both the phenomena we study and the tools we have to study it with are undergoing rapid change. . . ..

The Hill: Mark Mellman 3/4
Lessons of stimulus polling
Polling around the recently signed economic recovery bill affords an opportunity to tease out some lessons about public opinion: Partisanship Reigns (Or, Do Leaders Lead?) -- Regular readers will not be shocked to learn that partisanship heavily conditions voters' attitudes toward the stimulus. . . .

Washington Post 3/2
As Stocks Tumble, So Does Retirement Security
As the Dow Jones Industrial Average continues its downward spiral, there is deep public unease about fully-funded retirements as people's savings are now more tied to stock market performance than at any time in the past two decades. . . .

New York Times 3/2
Poll Finds U.S. Muslims Thriving, but Not Content
A Gallup poll of Muslims in the United States has found that they are far more likely than people in Muslim countries to see themselves as thriving. . . .

New York Times 2/28
Ailing G.O.P. Risks Losing a Generation
Republicans have their work cut out for them. Americans identifying themselves as Democrats outnumber those who say they are Republicans by 10 percentage points, the largest gap in party identification in 24 years. . . .

Greenberg Quinlan Rosner 2/28
Agenda of Historically Disenfranchised Groups
Four groups played a key role in the progressive victory last November -- unmarried women, African American voters, Latinos and younger voters. These groups all increased turnout in 2008 and all increased their Democratic margin relative to the 2004 Kerry vote. . . .

Washington Post 2/26
Majority of Americans Back President on Afghanistan
About two-thirds of Americans support President Obama's decision to send approximately 17,000 additional U.S. military forces to Afghanistan, and, in stark contrast to the sour public reception of former president George W. Bush's "surge" of troops in Iraq, support for Obama's move crosses party lines, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

Kaiser Family Foundation 2/25
Strong Support for Action on Health Care Reform
As economic conditions continue to worsen, the public is increasingly worried about the affordability and availability of care, with many postponing or skipping treatments due to cost in the past year and a notable minority forced into serious financial straits due to medical bills, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation's first health care tracking poll of 2009. . . .

Democracy Corps 2/25
Obama Breaks Through Polarization
In his speech to the nation tonight, Barack Obama managed to break through the partisan polarization of Washington and connect directly with American voters across the political spectrum according to dial and focus group research conducted during the speech. . . .

CBS News 2/25
Positive Reception For Obama Address
... Eighty percent of speech watchers approve of President Obama's plans for dealing with the economic crisis. Before the speech, 63 percent approved. . . .

The Hill: David Hill 2/25
Obama's focus failure
... The tendency I see in the Obama administration is to be scattered. They are not really coalescing their policy and communications efforts around the creation of a 20-to-25 percent core of top-of-mind responses that should be in one bucket, such as "fixing the economy" or "ending the conflict in Iraq." . . .

The Hill: Mark Mellman 2/25
Republican strategy didn't work
Leaderless, rudderless, bereft of a message or ideas and in defiance of common sense, Republicans continue to march into hell for a cause that is far from heavenly, diminishing further their already sullied public image. . . .

ABC News 2/24
Strong. But Average. And Way Divided.
There are a couple of data points worth keeping in mind as we await President Obama's address to the nation tonight -- and as we digest an aide's claim today, as Jake Tapper reports, that his strong approval rating is "earned." One, while his rating is high, it's also dead average for a new president. The other is the impressive partisanship beneath it. . . .

Gallup 2/24
Obama Job Approval Dips Below 60% for First Time
For the first time since Gallup began tracking Barack Obama's presidential job approval rating on Jan. 21, fewer than 60% of Americans approve of the job he is doing as president. . . .

Washington Post 2/24
Obama Gets High Marks for 1st Month
As President Obama prepares to address a joint session of Congress tonight, he is receiving strong reviews for his first full month in office, but deep partisan fault lines are quickly reemerging. . . .

New York Times 2/24
Broad Support for President
President Obama is benefiting from remarkably high levels of optimism and confidence among Americans about his leadership, providing him with substantial political clout as he confronts the nation's economic challenges and opposition from nearly all Republicans in Congress, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. . . .

ABC News 2/23
Deficit Worries Run High
President Obama's summit today on government spending comes at a time of heightened public concern about the federal budget deficit -- especially among critics of his $787 billion economic stimulus program. ... The increase in high-level concern about the deficit has occurred entirely among Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, who've tended to be more critical of the stimulus spending, as well as less inclined generally to support the new Democratic administration. . . .

Washington Post 2/23
High Public Doubt About Soc. Sec. & Medicare
Few Americans are "very confident" that Social Security and Medicare are in shape to provide benefits throughout their retirements, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, adding a lack of public trust to the problems today's White House summit must confront as it considers the country's future financial obligations. . . ..

Gallup 2/23
Obama's Job Approval at the One-Month Mark
President Barack Obama remains highly popular among the U.S. public at the end of his first month in office. However, the 63% of Americans currently approving of his job performance is down slightly from his initial 68% rating in January. ... Obama has not retained his initial level of job approval mainly because rank-and-file Republicans -- who already lagged well behind Democrats in their approval of Obama in January -- have quickly become even more critical. . . .

New America Foundation (pdf) 2/20
The Millennial Pendulum
Today's young people have considerably more progressive opinions about economic issues than do their elders. ... Observers and strategists are now asking whether we will see a lasting change in American politics as a result of the Millennials' arrival. . . .

Gallup 2/20
Despite Stimulus Bill, No Sign of Uptick in Mood
Gallup Poll Daily tracking shows no sign yet that the new $787 billion stimulus plan passed by Congress and signed into law this week by President Obama has made any change in the way Americans view the U.S. economy . . . .

Gallup 2/19
Canada Remains Americans' Most Favored Nation
Barack Obama's first foreign visit as president on Thursday will be to a country, Canada, that enjoys the highest favorable rating of 19 nations rated in Gallup's Feb. 9-12 World Affairs survey. . . .

UVA: Rhodes Cook 2/19
Not Your Father's Democratic Congress
... [L]ike Clinton, Obama begins his administration blessed with large Democratic majorities at the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue. ... Yet the surface equality masks a major difference between the two Democratic Congresses. . . .

The Hill: Mark Mellman 2/18
Bipartisan, post-partisan, just partisan
Bipartisanship has been used to describe so many things, it now means almost nothing. ... Partisanship remains the pre-eminent structuring principle of our politics. . . .

Democracy Corps 2/13
President Obama's Political Project
With so much of the public’s attention on President Obama's economic recovery package and plans for rescuing the financial system, Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner decided to step back and ask a more enduring question: what is the president’s mission and larger mandate for the country, as seen by the public. . . .

UVA: Alan Abramowitz 2/12
The False Hope of Bipartisanship
It's not a matter of "if." It's a matter of "when." As in, when will all of the feel-good rhetoric about Democrats and Republicans joining hands to solve the nation's problems come to an end and open partisan warfare resume in Washington? In fact, that time may already be here. . . .

McClatchy 2/12
Obama has political firepower
Nearly seven in ten Americans approve of the way President Barack Obama is doing his job, giving him enormous political capital as he pushes Congress to give him unprecedented tools to fight economic crisis, according to a new McClatchy-Ipsos poll. . . .

Gallup 2/11
Only 4 in 10 Believe in Evolution
On the eve of the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth, a new Gallup Poll shows that only 39% of Americans say they "believe in the theory of evolution," while a quarter say they do not believe in the theory, and another 36% don't have an opinion either way. These attitudes are strongly related to education and, to an even greater degree, religiosity. . . .

Gallup 2/11
Stimulus Support Edges Higher
Public support for an $800 billion economic stimulus package has increased to 59% in a USA Today/Gallup poll conducted Tuesday night, up from 52% in Gallup polling a week ago, as well as in late January. . . .

Democracy Corps 2/11
Support for Obama, Recovery Plan Remains Strong
A new survey by Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, completed in the wake of the Senate's passage of President Obama's economic recovery package, shows that support for Obama and his recovery plan remains strong. . . .

ABC News 2/11
Ratings of Economy at 23-Year Low
Consumer confidence suffered another blow this week as positive ratings of the national economy all but disappeared amid news of more job losses. . . .

ABC News 2/9
Afghans' Support for U.S. Efforts Tumbling
The United States, its NATO allies and the government of Hamid Karzai are losing not just ground in Afghanistan -- but also the hearts and minds of the Afghan people. A new national public opinion poll in Afghanistan by ABC News, the BBC and ARD German TV finds that performance ratings and support levels for the Kabul government and its Western allies have plummeted from their peaks, particularly in the past year. . . .

WorldPublicOpinion 2/6
Views of China and Russia Decline in Global Poll
Public views of China and Russia have slipped considerably in the past year, according to a new BBC World Service poll across 21 countries. Views of the US have improved modestly over the past year but remain predominantly negative, even though the poll was taken after President Obama's election. . . .

Pew Research Center 2/5
Americans Still Divided About Evolution
February 12 will mark the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin, the British naturalist who developed the theory of evolution through natural selection. ... Opinion polls over the past two decades have found the American public deeply divided in its beliefs about the origins and development of life on earth. . . .

UVA: Alan Abramowitz 2/5
Did the Wall Street Meltdown Change the Election?
According to James Campbell, the mid-September financial crisis hit the 2008 presidential election like a bolt out of the blue, transforming it from a horserace in which John McCain had a real chance of victory into a one-sided contest in which Barack Obama enjoyed a decisive advantage. ... Contrary to Campbell's claim that the Wall Street meltdown changed everything, an examination of public opinion data from the spring and summer of 2008 shows that the Wall Street meltdown merely reinforced the public's already overwhelmingly negative opinions about the performance of the incumbent president and the condition of the economy. . . .

ABC News 2/4
Nondisclosure Cited in Iraq Casualties Study
In a highly unusual rebuke, the American Association for Public Opinion Research today said the author of a widely debated survey on "excess deaths" in Iraq had violated its code of professional ethics by refusing to disclose details of his work. The author's institution later disclosed to ABC News that it, too, is investigating the study. . . .

The Hill: Mark Mellman 2/4
How long will voters wait?
It is a question on the lips of almost every commentator: "When will voters stop being patient and start blaming President Obama for the country’s economic woes?" . . .

National Journal: Charlie Cook 2/4
For Obama and GOP, Questions of Perception
Here are two questions to ponder over the table in the Rayburn Cafeteria. The first is whether, over the next couple of months, President Obama's job approval numbers are tethered to successes and failures, or are they more conceptual -- such that two-thirds of Americans are either optimistic or hopeful about his presidency and are likely to give him the benefit of the doubt. The second question is whether the strategies employed by congressional Republicans will help or further isolate them from swing voters. . . .

USA Today 2/2
Public wary of stimulus package
Americans overwhelmingly want Congress to pass an economic stimulus bill, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds, but expectations are low that it will have much of an effect on their own finances or turn the economy around this year. . . .

Democracy Corps 1/30
Strong Support for Obama Economic Plan
Two new surveys from Democracy Corps and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner find strong support for President Barack Obama, his agenda and his economic plan. Indeed, Democratic incumbents, even those in battleground seats and elected in the last two elections, win more electoral support when they vote for the plan. . . .

Gallup 1/30
Football Fans Favor Cardinals in Super Bowl
While the general public is evenly divided in its rooting interests in this Sunday's Super Bowl, pro football fans say they would like the Arizona Cardinals -- rather than the Pittsburgh Steelers -- to win, by 44% to 35%. . . .

Pew Research Center 1/29
Dems' Favorability Advantage Widens
As Republican and Democratic leaders in Congress battle over President Barack Obama's economic stimulus package, the latest survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press finds the Democratic Party with a vast favorability advantage over the GOP. . . .

James E. Campbell 1/29
The 2008 Election in Perspective
... The Republicans did carry substantial political baggage into the 2008 election; but despite these considerable disadvantages, the open seat election was shaping up as a very close contest in the weeks before the national conventions and McCain took the lead after the conventions, only to plummet in the polls with the Wall Street meltdown in mid-September. . . .

Gallup 1/29
State of the States: Job-Market Conditions
According to combined Gallup Poll Daily tracking for all of 2008, oil-producing states Wyoming, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas took four of the top five spots as the "best state job markets." By way of contrast, long economically depressed Michigan and housing disaster states Florida and Nevada took three of the four "worst state job market" spots. . . .

Gallup 1/29
State of the States: Consumer Confidence
According to combined Gallup Poll Daily tracking for all of 2008, residents of Rhode Island had the lowest level of confidence in the U.S. economy of any state in the union last year, followed by Michigan, Maine, and Massachusetts. . . .

Public Policy Institute of California (pdf) 1/29
Californians Back President Obama's Recovery Plan
A majority of Californians support President Barack Obama's economic recovery plan and see it as important in meeting the state's infrastructure needs, according to a survey released today by the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC). . . .

Democracy Corps 1/28
Obama and the Senior Vote
... Election Day was full of historic results for Barack Obama. But his performance among seniors (age 65 and over) provided one of the few lower points, as exit polls show that Obama lost to John McCain among seniors 45 to 53 percent. . . .

Gallup 1/28
State of the States: Importance of Religion
An analysis of more than 350,000 interviews conducted by Gallup in 2008 finds Mississippi, Alabama, South Carolina, Tennessee, Louisiana, and Arkansas to be the most religious states in the nation. Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, and Massachusetts are the least religious states. . . .

Gallup 1/28
State of the States: Political Party Affiliation
An analysis of Gallup Poll Daily tracking data from 2008 finds Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Hawaii to be the most Democratic states in the nation, along with the District of Columbia. Utah and Wyoming are the most Republican states. . . .

ABC News 1/28
Consumer Confidence Ties its Record Low
Consumer confidence has matched its worst in 23 years of weekly polls, with a record number of Americans saying their personal finances are in bad shape and nearly all rating the national economy negatively. . . .

Gallup 1/26
Obama's Initial Approval Ratings in Historical Context
With a 69% job approval rating in the latest Gallup Poll Daily update, Barack Obama continues a strong start to his presidency. . . .

ABC News: The Numbers 1/26
Bipartisanship on the Stimulus: Clean Power and...
When it comes to stimulus spending, bipartisanship starts with alternative energy. The problem: It also pretty much ends there. . . .

Los Angeles Times: Frank Luntz 1/23
Infrastructure: It's Job 1 to Americans
I'm a pollster and political consultant associated with Republican causes: the Contract with America, the "death tax" and, of course, ending wasteful Washington spending. So why am I behind the new stimulus legislation -- the biggest spending bill ever to be considered by Congress? . . .

Gallup 1/23
Democrats' '08 Advantage in Party ID Largest Since '83
An average of 36% of Americans identified themselves as Democrats and 28% as Republicans in 2008. . . .

Pew Research Center 1/22
Economy, Jobs Trump All Other Policy Priorities
As Barack Obama takes office, the public's focus is overwhelmingly on domestic policy concerns – particularly the economy. . . .

Gallup 1/22
What History Foretells for Obama's First Job Rating
Barack Obama can expect to receive a rating above 50% when Gallup reports his first job approval rating this weekend. All elected presidents since Dwight Eisenhower began their terms in office with approval ratings above 50%, generally low disapproval ratings, and high "no opinion" levels. . . .

CBS News: Poll Positions 1/21
Will Americans Embrace Obama's "Change"?
Change has come. And Americans expect it. But "change" can mean many things. Last week, when CBS News and The New York Times asked Americans to tell us their expectations for the Obama Presidency, 70 percent believed that President Obama will "bring about real change in the way things are done in Washington." . . .

ABC News: The Numbers 1/21
Gitmo and Torture: Slam Dunks?
Majorities of Americans support Barack Obama's positions on Guantanamo and the torture of terrorism suspects – but with enough doubters to make those policies something less than a slam dunk in terms of public opinion. . . .

ABC News: The Numbers 1/20
Post-Partisanship? Let's See
The buzz surrounding Barack Obama's inauguration – made explicit in his address today – is the prospect of a post-partisan presidency. The reality: Let's see. . . .

Gallup 1/20
Optimism Abounds as Power Changes Hands
Americans' high hopes for the country under the Obama presidency are perhaps best represented by the new USA Today/Gallup poll finding that 72% of Americans think the country will be better off four years from now. . . .

World Public Opinion 1/20
Optimism That Obama Will Improve U.S. Relations
As Barack Obama prepares to be sworn in as the 44th president of the United States, a new 17-nation poll conducted for the BBC World Service finds widespread and growing optimism that his presidency will lead to improved relations between the United States and the rest of the world. . . .

Gallup 1/19
Domestic Priorities Top Americans' To-Do List
Americans think it is very important that Barack Obama follow through on his promises to address problems in healthcare, energy, and the economy. They are less likely to view his pledges to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq or expand U.S. military power in Afghanistan as critical priorities. . . .

Washington Post: Behind the Numbers 1/19
The President-Elect and the Pastor
Barack Obama's pick of evangelical pastor Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at tomorrow's inauguration was initially met by a torrent of criticism, but it's unlikely to spark broad controversy - most Americans support the idea. . . .

Washington Post 1/19
Far Fewer Consider Racism Big Problem
As President-elect Barack Obama prepares to take office, far fewer black and white Americans say they view racism as "a big problem" in American society than said so in mid-1996, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. . . .

ABC News 1/18
Strong Ratings Greet Obama, Discontent in the Wings
A potentially volatile mix of high hopes for the new president and deep dissatisfaction with the country's condition greets Barack Obama's inauguration – a political fulcrum that could tip for or against him as he grapples with the country's economic crisis. . . .

New York Times 1/17
Poll Finds Faith in Obama, Mixed With Patience
President-elect Barack Obama is riding a powerful wave of optimism into the White House, with Americans confident he can turn the economy around but prepared to give him years to deal with the crush of problems he faces starting Tuesday, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News Poll. . . .

New York Times 1/17
Disapproval of Bush Unwavering
President Bush prepares to leave office with no evidence that public opinion toward him is softening during his final days in power, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. . . .

ABC News: The Numbers 1/16
The View From Kenya
High expectations of Barack Obama are not limited to the United States: They've soared to near-unanimity in his ancestral Kenya, to some extent bridging tribal tensions that spilled into violence there last year. . . .

CBS News: Poll Positions 1/15
Bush's Popularity Reaches Historic Lows
As the days of second and final term dwindle down (“to a precious few,” as an old song goes), President Bush is likely to leave office as the least popular president in polling history. . . .

Salt Lake Tribune 1/15
Even in Utah, Bush presidency rated lackluster, poor
President Bush's approval rating in Utah has dipped below 50 percent for the first time in a Salt Lake Tribune poll - a sign that the commander in chief's reputation has taken a beating even in his strongholds. . . .

Pew Hispanic Center 1/15
Hispanics and the New Administration
A year and a half after a lengthy, often rancorous debate over immigration reform filled the chambers of a stalemated Congress, the issue appears to have receded in importance among one of the groups most affected by it--Latinos. . . .

ABC News: The Numbers 1/15
A Polling Fairy Tale
Once upon a time an utterly inconsequential poll made the rounds - but one that underscored a highly consequential question in my corner of the world, and, ultimately, yours: What kind of standards news organizations apply to the data they report. . . .

Esquire: Nate Silver 1/14
How Obama Really Won the Election
If Bill Clinton was the first black president, then Barack Obama might be the first urban one. He is the only American president in recent history to seem unembarrassed about claiming a personal residence in a major American city. . . .

Democracy Corps 1/13
The 2008 Early Vote
... The early vote overall was very beneficial to Obama and Democrats. Self-identified Democrats made up a disproportionate share of the early vote, and many of them considered themselves strong Democrats. . . .

Center for American Progress 1/12
The Public Supports a Major Effort to Fight Poverty
One might assume that taking action to help the poorest among us wouldn’t draw much support these days with so many Americans worried about their own economic situation. But that’s not the case. A Gerstein/Agne poll conducted right after the election showed overwhelming support for setting a national goal to cut poverty in half within 10 years. . . .

Washington Post 1/12
Cellphones' Growth Does Number on Health Research
... The popularity of cellular telephones, an increasingly mobile population, rising expenses, flat budgets and new insights into ways people can answer a question differently depending on how it's asked -- all are conspiring to make health surveys more difficult. . . .

Bloomberg 1/9
Obama Uses Campaign Tactics to Sell Stimulus Plan
President-elect Barack Obama's top political aides are adapting their campaign tactics to selling policy, using data from polls and focus groups to shape the debate over a stimulus plan that may cost at least $775 billion. . . .

Cornell Belcher (pdf) 1/9
The Arc of the Democratic Party from 2004 - 2008
... There are a number of extraordinary stories to be told about the 2008 Democratic presidential and congressional elections. The one that has yet to be explored involves a deeper look at the turnaround by the Democratic Party not only this year, but over the course of the last four years, starting with the challenges the Democratic Party faced in the wake of George W. Bush's reelection and long coattails. . . .

Gallup 1/8
Consumer Expectations Improving With New Year
Consumer expectations are getting a little better as the new year gets underway. The percentage of consumers saying the economy is "getting better" minus the percentage saying it is "getting worse" improved to -58 points during the week ending Jan. 4, 2009, after having hit -70 in mid-December as a reflection of deteriorating consumer expectations. . . .

ABC News: The Numbers 1/8
Told Ya
Told ya so. OK, that is not terribly polite. But when it comes to the holiday shopping season, it's true, and it tells us something about the utility of public opinion polls that reaches well outside the little hothouse of election politics. . . .

CBS News: Poll Positions 1/7
The Polling Challenges For 2009
Did we learn anything in 2008 election campaign polling that will help us measure the public's assessment of the new administration in Washington? . . .

ABC News 1/7
Bush Legacy: A Tale of Two Terms
Sequentially hammered by the Iraq war, the bungled response to Hurricane Katrina, soaring gasoline prices and, as the coup de grace, the current economic crisis, Bush endured his second term without once attaining majority public approval -- a feat unseen in 70 years of presidential approval polls. . . .

The Hill: David Hill 1/7
Americans still riding wrong track
Americans are proving to be a cantankerous lot. The anticipated turnaround in the nation's mood has not occurred, despite the election of a new president who ostensibly represented hope and a new direction for so many in this country. . . .

Gallup 1/5
Despite Recent Lows, Bush Approval Avg. Midrange
Extreme highs and lows have characterized George W. Bush's job approval ratings as president. His record 90% approval rating early in his presidency following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks stands in stark contrast to his sub-30% approval ratings during most of his final year in office, which rank among the lowest ratings ever measured. . . .

Pew Research Center 1/5
States of the Union Before and After Bush
What a difference eight years can make -- or not. Between the final days of the presidency of Bill Clinton and the current wrapping up of the administration of George W. Bush, many changes have occurred in the state of the nation's polity and economy. And yet . . . others things, most notably certain American beliefs and attitudes, have remained remarkably constant. . . .

Gallup 1/2
Liberals' Confidence in Obama Remains High
Gallup Poll Daily tracking finds support for Barack Obama among liberal Democrats holding steady at 93% despite news reports that his core supporters are disappointed with some of his cabinet appointments and other decisions. Meanwhile, in recent weeks, Obama's ratings have improved among conservative Republicans, up from 23% to 29%. . . .

Gallup 1/2/09
Nearly Half in U.S. are Frequent Internet Users
Americans' frequent use of the Internet has almost doubled over the last five years; 48% now report using the Internet more than one hour per day compared to 26% in 2002. . . .

[ See earlier items ]

 

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