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Economy & Business

Are You Better Off Now Than Four Years Ago? 25 Percent Say ‘Yes’

Resurgent Republic unveiled a new survey of registered voters. Among the highlights:

  • Voters say America is still in a recession by 72 to 24 percent. Agreement crosses partisan lines, with 84 percent of Republicans, 75 percent of independents, and 59 percent of Democrats saying the country is still in a recession.
  • 39 percent of voters say they are worse off, 36 percent say they are about the same, and only 25 percent say they are better off than four years ago.
  • A majority — 51 percent — says the economy is staying the same, including 56 percent of Republicans and 55 percent of independents, while 19 percent say it is getting worse. Only 30 percent say it is getting better, and that number is driven by Democrats — 48 percent of Democrats say the economy is getting better, but only 25 percent of independents and 15 percent of Republicans agree.
  • By 55 to 40 percent, voters say the president’s plan is not working and we need to try something else. Independents agree with Republicans that the plan is not working — 63 to 32 percent and 87 to 10 percent respectively. Only Democrats think the plan is working, by 76 to 19 percent.

This section was rather fascinating, suggesting that Romney is already doing pretty well among independents and that he needs to solidify the Republican vote:

Barack Obama is viewed somewhat more favorably than Mitt Romney overall, primarily because of Obama’s sky-high rating among Democrats. Obama’s favorable/unfavorable rating among all voters is 50/45 percent, including 88/9 percent among Democrats and 14/83 percent among Republicans. Mitt Romney’s rating is 41/45 percent overall, including 72/18 percent among Republicans and 13/71 percent among Democrats.

Independents view Barack Obama more negatively than Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney’s favorable/unfavorable rating among Independents is 43/42 percent, compared to 44/50 percent for Barack Obama. Based on their current perceptions, Obama faces more of an uphill climb than Romney among Independent voters.

Independents hold an equally negative view of Republicans and Democrats in Congress. Predictably Republican and Democratic voters give high marks to representatives of their own party in Congress — the favorable/unfavorable ratings are 69/23 percent for Republican voters’ perception of Republicans in Congress and 76/19 percent for Democratic voters’ perception of Democrats in Congress. It will come as no surprise that Independent voters dislike both — their ratings are 32/56 percent for Republicans in Congress and 30/58 percent for Democrats in Congress.

Independents favor Republicans over Democrats on the generic ballot for Congress. Independents say they prefer the Republican candidate over the Democratic candidate for Congress by 38 to 32 percent.

Barack Obama leads Mitt Romney by single digits on the ballot test, driven by greater Democratic than Republican consolidation around the respective nominees at this point. Obama leads Romney overall by 49 to 42 percent, but Independents favor Romney by 45 to 41 percent. Obama’s lead comes from the five points more Democrats than Republicans in the sample, coupled with Obama taking 90 percent of the Democratic vote and Romney taking 84 percent of the Republican vote. Based on 2008 exit polls where 89 percent of Democrats backed Obama and 90 percent of Republicans backed John McCain, that partisan differential in support for their respective nominees is likely to evaporate by Election Day.

Six months from Election Day, Republicans indicate more interest in the election than Democrats or Independents. Seventy-eight percent of Republicans say they are “absolutely certain” to vote in the fall election, compared to 72 percent of Democrats and 68 percent of Independents.

This is a survey of 1,000 registered voters, conducted April 30 to May 3, and the sample is 35 percent Democrat, 31 percent independent, and 30 percent Republican. They note, “the margins of error for responses with an even split — 50 percent for one response and 50 percent for another response — are ±3.10 percent for the full sample, ±5.69 percent for Republicans (297 respondents), ±5.55 percent for Independents (312 respondents), and ±5.28 percent for Democrats (345 respondents).”


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