- Posted May 21, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Election 2012: Your stories
Voters on the Issues: Priority List
Gallup Poll has a released a new survey that ranks what voters see as the important economic issues in this presidential campaign and facing the country. Voters also voiced their views on who was best suited to deal with those issues: President Barack Obama or presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
What Gallup found were the Top 10 Economic Issues:
1. The cost of healthcare - 84%
2. Unemployment - 82%
3. The federal budget, deficit and debt - 82%
4. Weak economic growth - 79%
5. The cost of college education - 78%
6. The financial performance of Americans' savings
and retirement investments - 78%
7. Home values, foreclosures and mortgates - 74%
8. Living standards for the poorest Americans - 69%
9. Too much wealth controlled by too few Americans - 54%
10. Government regulation and private enterprise - 51%
Who do voters see as best to meet these 10 issues:
1. Obama: 51% Romney: 44%
2. Obama: 48% Romney: 47%
3. Obama: 39% Romney: 54%
4. Obama: 42% Romney: 52%
5. Obama: 54% Romney: 39%
6. Obama: 39% Romney: 53%
7. Obama: 46% Romney: 48%
8. Obama: 62% Romney: 34%
9. Obama: 54% Romney: 38%
10. Obama: 46% Romney: 49%
From this we see on healthcare the President has a 7-point advantage. On unemployment and the housing crisis, the two candidates are in a statistical tie. On the budget and weak economy, Romney leads by 15 and 10 points respectively. On college costs, the President has a 15-point edge. On retirement accounts, Romney is favored by 14 points. On the poor, it's Obama by 28 points and by 16 points on redistribution of wealth. The final issue of government regulation and dealings with business, once again there is a statistical tie.
Gallup also provides a breakdown by party affiliation:
1. Republicans: 78% Independents: 84% Democrats: 91%
2. Republicans: 81% Independents: 81% Democrats: 85%
3. Republicans: 93% Independents: 82% Democrats: 74%
4. Republicans: 84% Independents: 78% Democrats: 75%
5. Republicans: 67% Independents: 77% Democrats: 89%
6. Republicans: 78% Independents: 77% Democrats: 77%
7. Republicans: 74% Independents: 74% Democrats: 75%
8. Republicans: 61% Independents: 64% Democrats: 81%
9. Republicans: 41% Independents: 52% Democrats: 72%
10. Republicans: 61% Independents: 47% Democrats: 48%
And how did Gallup sum on the results:
When it comes to Americans' top three issues, Republicans put a little more emphasis than Democrats on the federal budget deficit, and Democrats put a little more emphasis than Republicans on healthcare costs, while the two parties have similar perceptions about unemployment. Overall, large majorities of both groups consider all three of these issues highly important.
Among the lower-ranking issues, weak economic growth is uniformly rated by the party groups as highly important. However, more Democrats than Republicans rate college costs (89% vs. 67%, respectively) and the living standards of poor Americans (81% vs. 61%) as highly important issues. Republicans are more concerned than Democrats about government regulations on private enterprise (61% vs. 48%).
The widest partisan gap in the poll is seen in ratings of the concentration of wealth, with 72% of Democrats rating it extremely or very important, compared with 41% of Republicans.
Independents' views are close to the national averages, with large majorities calling healthcare, the federal budget deficit, and unemployment highly important, but closer to 50% seeing the concentration of wealth and government regulation as highly important.
From the Cornfield, what is obvious from this latest poll is that it will be a squeaker of an election.
It also points out the slightest wind, no matter which it blows, hitting the nation's economic ship could point to toward either a Republican or Democratic port for shelter.