Obama Viewed as Doing Better than GOP Leaders in Explaining Vision
With just over a month to go before the midterm elections, the latest Congressional Connection poll finds that the public by a wide margin says Barack Obama has done a better job than Republican congressional leaders in explaining his plans and vision for the country.
The Story of Shirley Sherrod: Reconstruction of a Media Mess
A media analysis of the Shirley Sherrod story traces how the story evolved and played out in the media in that frantic period between the July 19 release of the video and the July 21 apologies to Sherrod from Gibbs and Vilsack as well as Fox News host Bill O’Reilly.
Proud Patriots — and Harsh Critics of Government
Nearly all Americans consider themselves patriotic and voice pride in being American. But many of those who voice strong patriotism and pride in the country also are highly critical of the federal government and its political leaders.
Distrust, Discontent, Anger and Partisan Rancor
By almost every conceivable measure Americans are less positive and more critical of government these days.
Data: Public Trust in Government: 1958-2010
Data from Pew Research Center, National Election Studies, Gallup, ABC/Washington Post, CBS/New York Times, and CNN Polls.
Public’s Economic Woes Persist
Americans don’t favor the current health care reform legislation, but most opponents prefer a new bill to no bill and more see their health care costs rising without reform than with it. Nearly everyone gives the national economy a negative rating; 70% of Americans say they have faced one or more job or financial-related problems in the past year
Census: Growing Awareness, Most Ready For Forms
Those with lower levels of income and education remain significantly less likely than others to say they will take part in the census. All partisans want to participate, but Democrats are more likely than independents or Republicans to say the census will benefit their community.
Midterm Election Challenges for Both Parties
Opinions of the Republican Party have improved significantly but still far more people blame the GOP for the poor economy than blame the Democrats. Anti-incumbent sentiment runs high: three-in-ten don’t want to see their current representative reelected. Financial institutions remain a major target of public anger.
Public Knowledge: Senate Legislative Process a Mystery to Many
In the latest Pew Research News IQ Quiz, Americans answered on average fewer than six out of 12 questions correctly. The public struggled with most of the political questions, and despite expressing strong interest in the health care debate, few know how many votes it takes to break a filibuster or how many GOP votes the bill got in the Senate.
It’s All About Jobs, Except When It’s Not
A look at the connection between the rise and fall of joblessness and the political fortunes of past presidents in the modern era is instructive although the lessons to be drawn are far from crystal clear. Thus far, only Ronald Reagan’s ratings in his first term have borne as close a connection as have Obama’s to changes in the unemployment rate.