U.S. Politics Dec. 20, 2011

In 2007, Mood Just Beginning to Sour, Democrats Better Regarded

As another presidential election year approaches, the political and economic landscape has changed in a number of ways since four years ago. The public’s mood was not very good, but still a lot better than it is today.

U.S. Politics Dec. 8, 2011

For Gingrich, Age May Just Be a Number

As the newly anointed GOP frontrunner, Newt Gingrich is facing increased scrutiny about his record, policy proposals and temperament. But so far, Gingrich’s age – he will turn 69 next summer – has virtually escaped notice.

U.S. Politics Dec. 6, 2011

An ‘Iron Hand’ Is No Substitute For Democracy

The experience of the former Soviet Union’s struggles to make the transition to a more open society holds an important lesson for the Middle East, a region in which the democratic tide still swells despite panicked opposition from some and the efforts of others to regulate its tempo.

U.S. Politics Oct. 19, 2011

Public and ’Occupy Wall Street’ Movement Agree on Key Issues

In an analysis in the New York Times, Pew Research Center president Andrew Kohut writes that the American public is beginning to take notice of the “Occupy movement.” Polling this week finds a growing number of people paying attention to news about the movement.

U.S. Politics Oct. 7, 2011

Tea Party on Foreign Policy: Strong on Defense and Israel, Tough on China

The Tea Party has emerged as a political force on domestic issues, but Republican supporters of the movement have a distinct approach to national security and the U.S. role in the world. Tea Party Republicans favor an assertive foreign policy, are strong supporters of Israel and take a hard line against illegal immigration.

U.S. Politics Sep. 8, 2011

Jobs vs. Deficit — Where the Public Stands

When President Obama goes before a joint session of Congress on Thursday to lay out a plan for spurring jobs creation, one of the political and policy dynamics at work will be the tension that animated the debate in Washington all this year: the push to reduce federal spending and the government’s deficit competing against whether some kind of stimulus is needed to deal with a faltering recovery and the stubbornly-high unemployment rate.

Global Sep. 7, 2011

From Hyperpower to Declining Power

Early in the post-Sept. 11 era, the projection of American military strength led to pervasive fears of an unleashed, and unchecked, hyperpower. More recently, however, the global financial crisis has turned the spotlight to America’s declining economic prowess and perceptions of a great power in decline.

Jul. 29, 2011

Wealth Gaps and Perception Gaps: A Paradox of the Great Recession

When the real estate market melted down, those hit hardest by the sharp drop in household wealth were blacks and Hispanics. But even while their wealth was being decimated, the political reaction among the nation’s minorities has been surprisingly muted.

U.S. Politics Jul. 14, 2011

The Debt Ceiling Showdown – Where the Public Stands

The nation is headed toward a possible government default on Aug. 2 if no agreement is reached to raise the debt ceiling.

U.S. Politics Jul. 5, 2011

Are Republicans Ready Now for a Mormon President?

An important group within the Republican base, white evangelical Protestants, is more uncomfortable with the idea of a Mormon candidate than are other Republicans.