Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Found while looking for something else

In the current budget debate, it seems like Republicans are convinced that the public wants budget cuts and doesn't mind tax cuts for high earners.  Democrats don't seem to have the same conviction about what the public wants.  Of course, this gives Republicans an advantage in bargaining.  This observation led me to wonder if there were survey questions about what people thought that most people thought.  There are a few, which I will talk about in a later post, but while searching, I was diverted by a question in a Gallup poll from 1949:

"How do you think that most people vote on a candidate?  Do they vote for a man they think will do the most good for the country as a whole--or do they vote for a man they think will do the most good for them and other people like them?" 

28% said voters thought about the country as a whole, 66% said themselves, 5% didn't know, and 1% gave a qualified answer. 

The biggest group differences involved race and education. 

                  Country    Self    DK      TOTAL
Whites              27%       67%     5%      100%
Blacks              40%       47%    12%      100%

Not HS Graduate     33%       59%     7%      100%
HS Graduate         27%       69%     2%      100%
College             17%       79%     2%      100%

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