In remarks at a dinner at the Newseum hosted by the Roper Center, Pew Research Center President Andrew Kohut analyzed the voter preferences revealed in exit and post-election polls and their implications for the incoming administration.
Inside Obama’s Sweeping Victory
Barack Obama captured the White House on the strength of a substantial electoral shift toward the Democratic Party and by winning a number of key groups in the middle of the electorate. In particular, the overwhelming backing of younger voters was a critical factor in Obama’s victory, according to an analysis of National Election Pool exit poll data.
Internet Now Major Source of Campaign News
Television remains the dominant source, but the percent of people who say they get most of their campaign news from the internet has tripled since 2004.
Democrats Post Gains in Affiliation Across Age Cohorts
The proportion of voters identifying with the Democratic Party has grown significantly since the 2004 election, and the shift has been particularly dramatic among younger voters.
The Element of Surprise
As recently as a month ago, this analyst and the American public itself were throwing up our hands and saying we can’t figure this one out — too many intangibles. No more.
Democrats Hold Party ID Edge Across Political Battleground
As shown in a series of charts, the Democratic Party now holds an advantage in several swing states, has increased its advantage in several “blue” states and cut into the GOP’s lead in some “red” states since the last presidential campaign.
Though by no means a perfect instrument, polls make it possible for more opinions, held by a broader and more representative range of citizens, to be known to the government and thus, potentially, heeded.
A Word about Debate Impressions
View “word clouds” of voters’ impressions of the performances of John McCain and Barack Obama in their first presidential debate based on one-word descriptions from a recent Pew survey.
The Bad Rap on the Bailout Bill
Members who voted against the original House bill are said to be responding to strong opposition to the rescue plan from their constituents, but that’s not what most Americans are saying.
In every recent election the public has accurately picked the winner by this time in the cycle. But not this year.