Public Notice Weekly Polling Analysis

| March 24 2013

POLLING ANALYSIS
March 16-22, 2013

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According to Fox News, 68% of register voters think the national debt is an immediate problem that should be dealt with right away; 27% say it is a problem, but solving can wait a few years; and 4% say it is not a problem.

According to Fox News, 85% of registered voters think cutting the budget deficit is a worthy goal in itself.

According to Fox News, when given two choices. 38% of registered voters think a higher priority for Congress should be to spend money to create jobs. 54% say cutting spending to cut the deficit should be the priority.

According to the Economist, 20% of adults think federal workers and contractors should be spared from the effects of the sequester spending cuts; 54% think members of the military should; 40% think people who receive government assistance should; and 17% said not the categories above should be spared.

President ObamaAverage approval from early to late March was 48% according to RealClearPolitics. Average disapproval was 47.4%. (The average one week ago, which covered late February to mid-March, was 48.3%. Average disapproval was 46.3%)

Here are the polls released this week on Presidential job approval:

  • ARG: 49% of adults approve, up from 48% in March 2012. 46% disapprove, the same percentage as a year ago.
  • CNN: 47% of adults approve, down from 51% in March 2012. 50% disapprove, up from 45% one year ago. Among Independents, 41% currently approve and 53% disapprove.
  • Economist: 48% of adults approve and 46% disapprove.
  • Fox News: 47% of registered voters approve, the same as in March 2012. 47% disapprove, up from 45% one year ago.
  • Pew: 47% of adults (42% of Independents) approve and 46% (50% of Independents) disapprove.

Gallup tracks President Obama’s job approval on a weekly basis. The average one week ago (March 4-10, 2013) showed 49% approved and 44% disapproved. The latest weekly numbers available (March 11-17, 2013) showed 48% approve and 46% disapprove. Last year at this time (March 12-18, 2012), 46% approved and 47% disapproved.

Rasmussen conducts a daily tracking poll. One week ago (March 15), 50% approved and 48% disapproved. On March 22, approval was 52%; disapproval was 47%. Last year at this time, the President’s approval was 47% and his disapproval 51%.

Congress: Average approval for early to mid-March was 13.7% according to the RealClearPolitics average. Average disapproval was 81.3%. (The average one week ago, which covered early to early March, was 14.2%. Average disapproval was 79.2%)

Here are the polls released this week on Congressional job approval:

  • Economist: 8% of adults approve and 68% disapprove.
  • Fox News: 14% of registered voters approve and 79% disapprove.

Right Track/Wrong Track: According to the RealClearPolitics average, which covered mid-February to mid-March, 33.8% think the country is headed in the right direction while 53.8% think it is headed in the wrong direction. (One week ago, the right track average, which covered  mid-February to early March, was 33.4%. The wrong track average was 59.6%.)

Here are the polls released this week on the direction of the country:

  • Economist: 30% of adults think the country is headed in the right direction and 56% think it is headed in the wrong direction.
  • Rasmussen: 31% of likely voters think the country is headed in the right direction and 60% think it is headed in the wrong direction.

ISSUE SPECIFIC

Budget Deficit & Spending:
According to Gallup, 72% of adults (71% of Independents) would vote for a federal government program that spent government to put Americans to work on urgent infrastructure projects.

According to Gallup, 72% of adults (69% of Independents) would vote for a federal government program that spent government to put create more than one million new jobs.

According to Rasmussen, 20% of likely voters think the current federal deficit is too small. 59% think it is too big and 13% say it’s about right.

According Rasmussen, 16% of likely voters think it is possible to balance the federal budget without cutting spending. 71% disagree and say it is not possible. 13% are not sure.

According to Rasmussen, 87% of likely voters consider it at least somewhat important to balance the federal budget. Only 10% feel it’s not very or not at all important to balance the budget. According to Fox News, 85% of registered voters think Congress should be required to balance the budget; 13% think it should not be required to.

According to Fox News, 49% of registered voters think the sequester was a good idea while 37% think it was a bad idea.

According to CNN, 21% of adults (the same number of Independents) say the sequester spending cuts have affected the economy a great deal, 39% (37% of Independents) say they have affected it somewhat; 21% (23% of Independents) say the sequester spending cuts have not affected the economy much; and 15% (16% of Independents) say the sequester has not affected the economy at all.

According to CNN, 11% of adults (14% of Independents) say the sequester spending cuts have affected their personal financial situation a great deal, 24% (27% of Independents) say they have affected their situation somewhat; 21% (19% of Independents) say the cuts have not affected them much; and 43% (46% of Independents) say the sequester spending cuts have not affected them at all. According to the Economist, 28% of adults think the sequester spending cuts will have a major effect on them personally; 34% think they will have a minor effect; 14% think they will have no effect; and 24% are not sure.

According to the Economist, 46% of adults think the sequester spending cuts will have a major effect on the military; 26% think they will have a minor effect; 5% think they will have no effect; and 22% are not sure.

According to the Economist, 42% of adults think the sequester spending cuts will have a major effect on Americans who receive government benefits; 28% think they will have a minor effect; 8% think they will have no effect; and 21% are not sure.

President Obama approval on the issue:

  • CNN: 31% of adults approve and 67% disapprove.
  • Economist: 40% of adults approve and 49% disapprove.

Economy & Jobs:
According to ARG, 40% of adults think the country is in a recession and 38% think it is not. 22% are not sure.

According to Gallup, “Americans’ confidence in the economy continued to improve last week as the U.S. stock market hit all-time highs before slipping on Friday. Gallup’s Economic Confidence Index rose to -14 — the highest since the -13 reading for the week ending Feb. 24, before the budget sequestration cuts took effect on March 1. With last week’s score — up from -17 the prior week — confidence is inching closer to the weekly five-year high of -8 reached in early February.”

According to Fox News, 28% of registered voters feel confident about the economy and 65% feel nervous.

According to ARG, 6% of adults think the economy is in excellent shape; 10% think it is in very good shape; 28% think it is in good shape; 26% think it is in bad shape; 12% think it is in very bad shape; and 17% think it is in terrible shape.

According to the Economist, 29% of adults think the economy is getting better; 33% think it is getting worse; and 32% think it is stuck in neutral. According to ARG, 46% of adults think the economy is getting better; 28% think it is getting worse; and 19% think it is stuck in neutral.

President Obama approval on the issue:

  • ARG: 47% of adults approve, up from 44% in March 2012. 50% disapprove, the same percentage as a year ago.
  • Economist: 43% of adults approve and 46% disapprove.

Health Care:
According to Fox News, 30% of registered voters would repeal the entire 2010 health care law; 25% would repeal parts; 20% would expand it and 20% would keep it as is.

According to Kaiser, 37% of adults have a favorable view of the 2010 health care law, down from 41% one year ago and from 46% in April 2010, right after the law was passed. 40% of adults have an unfavorable view of the 2010 health care law – the same percentage as one year ago and in April 2010.

According to Kaiser, 40% of adults have a favorable view of the individual mandate in the bill while 60% have an unfavorable view.

According to Kaiser, 21% of adults believe they and their family will be better off under the 2010 health care law. 29% say they will be worse off and 40% say it won’t make any difference.

Regulations:
According to Fox News, 26% of registered voters think the more than 1,000 regulations added since election day will help the economy. 50% think they will hurt.

Taxes:
According to Gallup, 79% of adults (78% of Independents) would vote for a law that cut taxes for businesses and manufacturers that created jobs in the U.S.

According to Fox News, when asked what bothers them most about the tax code, 10% of registered voters said the amount they pay; 8% said the complexity; 38% said that some Americans don’t pay their fair share; and 43% said the way the government spends their money.

Public Notice is an independent non-profit dedicated to providing facts and insight on the economy and how government policy affects Americans’ financial well-being.

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