Youth Engagement Falls; Registration Also Declines
Young voters are significantly less engaged in this year’s election than at a comparable point in 2008 and now lag far behind older voters in interest in the campaign and intention to vote.
Eastwood Shares Top Billing at RNC with Mitt Romney
The public paid far less attention to this year’s Republican convention in Tampa. Among those who watched at least a little of the event last week, 20% said Clint Eastwood’s speech was the highlight of the event and 17% said the same for Mitt Romney’s speech.
More Interest in GOP Platform than Romney’s Speech
As the Republican convention gets underway, more Americans express interest in learning about what’s in the GOP platform than in speeches by either Mitt Romney or his running mate, Paul Ryan.
Conventions Still Draw Sizable Audience, Boost Campaign Interest
Despite limited prime-time coverage, the Republican and Democratic conventions still give the parties a chance to define their presidential candidates and spark public interest in the campaign.
GOP Holds Early Turnout Edge, But Little Enthusiasm for Romney
Republicans are more engaged than Democrats in contrast to 2008 when it comes to focusing on this year’s presidential campaign and saying it really matters who wins. But Democrats are more enthusiastic about Barack Obama than Republicans are about Mitt Romney.
Cable Leads the Pack as Campaign News Source
Cable news is now the top regular source for campaign news. The long-term decline in the number of Americans getting campaign news from local and network TV news, and local newspapers, steepened this year. Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter are used for campaign news by a relatively limited audience.
Obama Tests Well at Start of Reelection Run
Nearly half of registered voters say they would like to see Barack Obama reelected, while 37% say they would prefer to see a Republican candidate win the 2012 election. As for who that candidate will be, the GOP has yet to coalesce behind a candidate, but Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee lead the pack at this early stage.
Democrats Stirring but Fail to Match GOP Support, Engagement
As the 2010 midterm elections near, Republican engagement and enthusiasm continue at record levels, outpacing even improved Democratic showings on these indicators. The growing popularity of early voting — about a quarter of voters nationally say they plan to vote before Election Day — gives Democrats less time to make up ground and there is no indication that their voter mobilization efforts are outmatching Republican efforts.
Obama’s Lead Over Clinton Disappears; Unfavorables Rise for Both Candidates
Barack Obama’s slipping support for the Democratic nomination reflects a modest decline in his personal image rather than improved impressions of Hillary Clinton. Both retain advantage over McCain as economy tops public’s concerns.
A Summer of Discontent with Washington
All three branches of the federal government are under fire from the American public. Just 29% approve of President Bush’s job performance while the proportion with a favorable view of Congress has declined 12 percentage points since January. Even favorable opinions of the U.S. Supreme Court have fallen, from 72% in January to 57% currently.