NBC/WSJ Poll: Important Issues and the Economy

The President’s State of the Union Address will be given tonight.  The NBC/Wall Street Journal Poll, given January 22-25, gives us a snapshot of what we think on a number of issues. I am presenting two questions from that poll that wise representatives would use to guide their votes this year.

I like to look at opinion polls. A problem with them is that the  questions and answers can interpret differently.  What do the terms  “Reforming Social Security and Medicare” and “Middle Class” mean to you?

The following question asked the responders to “Please tell me whether you think it (issues mention) should be an absolute priority for the Obama administration and THIS year’s Congress”.

ISSUE Absolute  Priority For This Year Should NOT be Pursued
Creating Jobs 91% 4%
Reducing the federal budget deficit 74% 3%
Ensuring all children have access to pre-school education 63% 14%
Addressing Iran’s nuclear program 60% 12%
Closing corporate tax loopholes 59% 8%
Withdrawing almost all combat troops from Afghanistan 57% 10%
Reforming Social Security and Medicare 56% 16%
Fix and keep the new health care law 54% 27%
Increase the minimum wage 51% 18%
Using federal aid dollars to encourage colleges to offer affordable tuition 49% 19%
Reforming the nation’s intelligence so there is greater oversight and limits placed on what type of information can be collected in this country 49% 13%
Passing new immigration legislation 47% 9%
Enacting pension and entitlement reform 38% 12%
Addressing the issue of climate change 27% 29%

How well do you agree the responders’ answers?

The full poll had two other columns that I didn’t include–”Can Be Delayed Until Next Year”, and “Not Sure”. You can see those figures at on-line, page 13.

Another question in the poll asks, “How does the economy work for that type of person?”

They had a choice of:

“Very Well”, “Fairly Well”, “Somewhat Well”, “Not That Well”, “Not Well at All”, and Not Sure.”

Group Total Very/Fairly Well
The wealthy 81
Men 53
You and your family 37
Women 33
The middle class 22
Those living in poverty 13

This poll can bring up a lot of questions. Remember these are people’s opinions. It seems that we feel that our family is doing better than the “Middle Class”.  More than half of us feel that the economy works for Men, but only 1 out of 3 feel that it is working for women. You can see the full set of data at (1), page 16.

The report is 21 pages long, and has 22 questions, although there are many ‘sub-questions’. Many questions have responses of previous polls so you an follow the trends for those issues.

This is a nation-wide poll.  Do you think the responses wold be much different if it was given in the NY 23rd?


About pystew

Retired Teacher, political science geek, village trustee. I lean a little left, but like a good political discussion. My blog, the New NY 23rd (http://newny23rd) is about discussing the issues facing the people of our new congressional district. Let's hear all sides of the issues, not just what the candidates want us to hear.
This entry was posted in 2014, Congress, Constituents, Data, Economics, Media, Reed's Views. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to NBC/WSJ Poll: Important Issues and the Economy

  1. whungerford says:

    The first question is too vague to be useful. That 91% would favor creating jobs is reasonable, but how? Tom Reed would do it by slashing business taxes, rescinding regulations, and despoiling the environment. It is unlikely that anything like 91% would agree with that program. The other items have similar ambiguities.

    The second question doesn’t provide much information. The groups are ranked roughly in order of income. If the middle class group is self-identified, the low ranking may reflect the fact that even young persons with little education working a part time job at a fast food restaurant may identify themselves as middle class.The results for men and women are confusing, since they reflect both men’s and women’s opinions about how men and women are doing. The fact that people believe their families are doing better than others is common in sociological research–most likely it doesn’t correspond to reality.

    I suspect results for Western NY would be similar, but it would be interesting if a comparison were possible.


  2. Deb Meeker says:

    Thanks for bringing this poll to our attention. Admittedly I’m a little sad that climate change was at the bottom of concerns.


  3. BOB McGILL says:

    Maybe the public is smarter than you think. Climate change has been challenged and is starting to be seen as a HOAX. Most people think of environmentalists as a bunch of crazy nut cases.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.