A political research study by the National Business Research Institute, Inc. (“NBRI”) shows that pre-debate opinions of the 2008 Presidential Candidates vary significantly by Age, Gender, Annual Income, Level of Education, and Marital Status. The survey was distributed to a random sample of 61,000 individuals in September, 2008, just prior to the first round of Presidential and Vice-Presidential debates. A total of 2,571 surveys were received for analysis. A confidence level of 99% and a 3% sampling error was achieved.
NBRI’s 2008 Presidential Candidate Study reveals that:
· 56% of the respondents would vote for John McCain while 36% would vote for Barack Obama, if the election was held now (prior to the debates).
· 48% of respondents feel that The Economy is the most important issue when selecting a President, followed by Homeland Security (22%), Energy Policy (10%), The War in Iraq (8%), Health Care (7%) and Illegal Immigration (5%).
· Respondents believe that John McCain exhibits stronger Presidential Abilities than Barack Obama in the areas of The Economy (44% to 39%), Homeland Security (79% to 30%), Energy Policy (50% to 38%), The War in Iraq (66% to 34%), and Illegal Immigration (37% to 27%). Barack Obama was believed to be stronger than John McCain in the area of Health Care (44% to 25%).
· Women feel that Barack Obama understands the issues facing Average Americans (46%) more so than Men (34%), and Men feel that John McCain understands the issues facing Average Americans (55%) more so than Women (48%).
Additional findings include:
· Respondents favor a “phased withdrawal” from Iraq (89%) to an “immediate withdrawal” (11%).
· All age groups are in favor of more offshore drilling for oil: 25-34 years old (51%), 35-44 years old (67%), 45-54 years old (69%), 55-64 years old (69%) and 65 years old and over (75%).
· More Men (74%) favor increased drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) than Women (45%).
· Respondents in Civil Unions/Domestic Partnerships (80%) favor Universal Healthcare more so than respondents in all other marital status groups: Married (34%), Single, Never Married (50%), Divorced/Separated (45%), and Widowed (40%).
· Republicans (91%) favor an American’s right to own guns more so than Democrats (58%).
· High School graduates (83%) are in favor of the death penalty more so than respondents with Some College (75%), College Graduates (70%), and those in Graduate School (62%).
· Women support same-sex marriage (42%) and same-sex civil unions (53%) more so than Men (24% and 45%, respectively).
· Women favor raising the minimum wage (70%) more so than Men (48%).
· College Graduates (51%) and those in Graduate School (51%) favor a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants more so than those with a High School education (30%) and Some College (40%).
This study will be repeated immediately following the conclusion of all Presidential and Vice-Presidential Debates, and the public opinions at that time, along with any significant changes from opinions reported herein, will be published prior to the election on November 4th. NBRI is a consulting firm that specializes in psychological research (customer, employee, patient, political, and market research studies) in order to assist businesses and governments in understanding the thinking of their human populations. The firm was founded in 1982 and the consultants working for NBRI possess Ph.D. degrees in Organizational Psychology with expertise in statistics and psychological research.