Beat the Press: Many Say Press has Been Too Tough on Sarah Palin
While strong majorities feel the press has been fair to John McCain, Barack Obama and Joe Biden, as many people say the press has been too tough on the governor of Alaska (38%) as say it has been fair (38%). Republicans overwhelmingly believe the press has been too hard on Palin (63%).
Interest in Economic News Surges
Attention to news about the economy skyrocketed last week, with 70% of Americans following developments very closely, up from 56% the previous week. Interest in the campaign also saw a new high for the cycle, and more Americans (64%) say they are very likely to watch the VP debate than said so about last week’s presidential debate (58%).
McCain’s Image Falls as Economic Worries Rise; Public Awaits Debate
Independents’ views of McCain have become significantly less favorable in the last few days, but they still expect him to win the coming foreign policy debate.
Views of Palin Fluid as Spotlight Remains on GOP Ticket
Sarah Palin continued to be a dominant factor in presidential campaign coverage last week, but her impact on the race remains unclear and her public image is very much in flux.
McCain’s Image Improves – With Big Assist From Palin
While the GOP ticket leader’s speech received only modest reviews, his running mate’s address was viewed as the highlight of the Republican convention and helped boost McCain’s public image overall. However, many in the public still question Palin’s qualifications.
After Busy Week, Views of Both Candidates Improve
As attention to the campaign increased substantially last week, the images of both Barack Obama and John McCain improved. Reviews of Obama’s acceptance speech were overwhelmingly positive. Among those who could rate it, nearly half (48%) rated the speech excellent and another 36% rated it good.
Obama’s Background Better Known Than His Issue Positions
As Obama accepts the Democratic Party’s nomination for president in Denver, more than six-in-ten Americans say they know a lot or a fair amount about his background, but only about half are familiar with his policies.
Party Time: Democrats Primed To Tune Into Convention
More Americans are interested in following the Democratic Convention (59%) than the Republican Convention (48%). An overwhelming majority of Democrats (79%) plan to follow their party’s convention. However, those who favored Hillary Clinton express only modest interest in Obama’s speech and strong interest in her address.
Key News Audiences Now Blend Online and Traditional Sources
For more than a decade, audiences for most traditional news sources have steadily declined and the number of people getting news online has surged. The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press’ biannual media study also finds that a growing number of news consumers mix both old and new sources. The report presents a typology that breaks Americans into four groups: Integrators, Net-Newsers, Traditionalists and the Disengaged.
China Olympics Earn American Attention, Approval
Most say they are watching at least some of the Olympic coverage and the share saying it was a good decision to hold the games in China has risen 11 points to a 52% majority. Americans also remain optimistic that by the end of the games, the U.S. will have won more gold medals than any other country.