Fully two-thirds of voters (67%) correctly identify Mitt Romney as the candidate who said 47% of the public is dependent on government and more than half of them (55%) have a negative reaction.
Nearly half (46%) say the coverage of Romney and Obama has been fair. Among those who see a bias, as many say the press has been too easy on Romney (20%) as too tough on him (21%), while nearly twice as many say press coverage of the president has been too easy (28%) than too tough (15%).
In the wake of the party conventions, Democrats express increasingly positive views of the presidential campaign.
The public continued to track news about the economy and the presidential election, while paying less attention to another important political story – Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s victory in a hard-fought recall election.
Americans continued to follow news about the presidential campaign more closely than any other news last week, though they also closely followed news about the price of gasoline.
Americans focused most closely last week on news about the presidential election, as the race increasingly shifted from the Republican primary contest to the head-to-head fight between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.
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.
While the focus this year has been on the GOP's race, Democrats express about as much interest in 2012 candidates as do Republicans.
A week after the election, voters are feeling good about themselves, the presidential campaign and Barack Obama. Looking ahead, they have high expectations for the Obama administration, with two-thirds predicting that he will have a successful first term.
Fully 60% of voters followed campaign news very closely this weekend, the highest level of interest on the eve of an election since the Pew Research Center began tracking campaign news interest in 1988. Throughout the campaign, Americans said they were hearing more about Obama than about McCain, although analysis shows news coverage became closely balanced between the two candidates.