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PUBLIC OPINION > The Economy Will Overshadow Social Issues in 2012 Election

News 2012/02/23 23:43:08
We're hardly two months into the year, and it already feels like election season has been underway for an eternity. The Republican primary is winding down a bit, but it's still too soon to call anything. Now people are starting to look toward November, when President Obama will try to protect his office from the chosen Republican candidate, and both parties are stacking their decks.

Because of the recession, the economy has been at the forefront of the political landscape, but social issues (same-sex marriage, illegal immigration, abortion, drug laws) could take the spotlight at any time. Shepard Smith polled the public on whether they think social issues or the economy will dominate the election.

Bigger Topic in the General Election: Social Issues or the Economy?


77% Think the Economy Will Be a Bigger Topic

The economy has been the biggest issue of the season so far. Why should it be any different in the general election? There are, of course, important debates in both fields, but the economy seems to be the most pressing of the two. If we can't even afford to fill up our gas tanks, social issues aren't going to matter very much. One commenter wrote, "Freedom you are unable to afford to exercise is no freedom at all. Just ask the Greeks."



Conservatives Are Concerned About the Economy

The most obvious difference here was, not surprisingly, between political parties. Conservatives felt more strongly that the economy would be a bigger talking point than social issues in the general election (80%), while fewer than half of liberal respondents felt the same way (44%).

Women Are More Worried About Social Issues

Both genders felt the economy would be a bigger topic in the election, but women were 13% more likely to side with social issues. This could be because one of the bigger issues in the social hemisphere, abortion, applies directly to them. But that's not the only major issue...

Homosexuals Hold on Social Issues

We thought maybe women were more interested in social issues because of abortion, but under that assumption it would make sense to assume the homosexual vote might swing that way as well. It didn't. Only 12% of gay and lesbian respondents though social issues would take the spotlight. Bisexual voters, on the other hand, voted strongly in favor of social issues.

If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit our original poll about election issues. We'd love to hear from you!
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Top Opinion

  • Civic Minded 2012/02/24 04:31:47
    Civic Minded
    +14
    First it is government's out of control spending. Second is the massive regulations which make American companies leave and employ people in foreign nations. Get government off our backs and things will improve dramatically!
    big government big government

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  • theprothinker 2013/03/12 16:17:28
    theprothinker
    Why isn't anybody talking about inflation? People who have to drive to work are getting poorer and poorer (gas price at the pump). Have you checked out the price of a box of breakfast cereal? Healthcare costs are ridiculous! What do you pay a month for your phone, internet, and TV service??? The housing market is the only thing that isn't out of control right now (due to the slump), but the cost of apartments is still going up. Is it because the news media just doesn't want to report bad economic news which might reflect on the President?
  • manny 2012/06/14 00:33:20
    manny
    Social issues take a back economy first and bring our troops home.
  • dwight 2012/05/24 04:23:55
    dwight
    it will play a key roll.
  • MR. 2012/04/26 12:33:22 (edited)
    MR.
    "IT'S AGAIN THE ECONOMY STUPID!" (WAS EVEN WRITTEN ON A BATHROOM WALL!)
  • MidnightCowboy 2012/04/26 04:43:47
    MidnightCowboy
    +1
    People vote by the pocketbook, so, the economy will be an integral factor regarding the 2012 Presidential election.
  • Candy 2012/03/14 03:44:54
    Candy
    Deregulation, and allow the free market to work. Small businesses get things going, not the government. Name one successful green energy company. Name one of the 101 $45Billion-a-year regulations Obama has implimented that has helped the economy grow.

    15% actual unemployment. 19% unemployment for African Americans. 45% of America on Welfare and Food Stamps. This is disturbing.



    Question about Limbaugh/Maher: http://www.sodahead.com/unite...

    TwitteR: #TheMissesHelp
  • wtw 2012/03/11 04:05:39
    wtw
    The economy will not effect more than the 30% that really think. Most people beleive the lies and deception the media puts forth. The media trumps truth but not reasoning.
  • Avenged7 2012/03/05 20:19:09
    Avenged7
    Of course! The Republicans will lose if they stay on this course of contraception, and the war against women!!!
  • Candy Avenged7 2012/03/14 03:46:56
  • Avenged7 Candy 2012/03/14 19:31:34
    Avenged7
    I'm talking about your crap party's war on women, not individual insults toward women. But if you want to just compare liberal insults, and conservatives insults toward women, I can give you a longer list with conservative insults to women. BUT I think you are just trying to change the subject, so as to take the heat off of your crooked gang, that calls themselves an American political party. Mostly they are more like the Mafia!!!!
  • Candy Avenged7 2012/03/15 02:00:37
    Candy
    Go for it. I'm not changing the subject, I'm adding to it :)

    I have nothing to add to your baseless accusation of the war on women. Women already have access to free birth control, and cheap birth control.
  • Avenged7 Candy 2012/03/18 13:33:50
    Avenged7
    Well thank you for a moment of sanity. Yes they do have access to free, and cheap birth control. So what the hell is all this crazy propaganda, from your gang about???????
  • BlueRepublican 2012/03/03 22:01:18
    BlueRepublican
    +2
    @SodaheadNews " the homosexual vote might swing that way" LOL!!!!
  • bill 2012/03/02 02:47:48
    bill
    +2
    A very interesting column.. COMPLETELY NEUTRAL
    Be sure to Read the Poem at the end.

    Charley Reese's final column for the Orlando Sentinel...
    He has been a journalist for 49 years.
    He is retiring and this is HIS LAST COLUMN.

    Be sure to read the Tax List at the end.

    This is about as clear and easy to understand as it can be. The article below is completely neutral, neither anti-republican or democrat. Charlie Reese, a retired reporter for the Orlando Sentinel, has hit the nail directly on the head, defining clearly who it is that in the final analysis must assume responsibility for the judgments made that impact each one of us every day. It's a short but good read. Worth the time. Worth remembering!

    545 vs. 300,000,000 People
    -By Charlie Reese

    Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

    Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?

    Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?

    You and I don't propose a federal budget. The President does.

    You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does.

    You and I don't write the...























    &




































































































































    &






    A very interesting column.. COMPLETELY NEUTRAL
    Be sure to Read the Poem at the end.

    Charley Reese's final column for the Orlando Sentinel...
    He has been a journalist for 49 years.
    He is retiring and this is HIS LAST COLUMN.

    Be sure to read the Tax List at the end.

    This is about as clear and easy to understand as it can be. The article below is completely neutral, neither anti-republican or democrat. Charlie Reese, a retired reporter for the Orlando Sentinel, has hit the nail directly on the head, defining clearly who it is that in the final analysis must assume responsibility for the judgments made that impact each one of us every day. It's a short but good read. Worth the time. Worth remembering!

    545 vs. 300,000,000 People
    -By Charlie Reese

    Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

    Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?

    Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?

    You and I don't propose a federal budget. The President does.

    You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does.

    You and I don't write the tax code, Congress does.

    You and I don't set fiscal policy, Congress does.

    You and I don't control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

    One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one President, and nine Supreme Court justices equates to 545 human beings out of the 300 million are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

    I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank.

    I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a President to do one cotton-picking thing. I don't care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator's responsibility to determine how he votes.

    Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party.

    What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits. The President can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it.

    The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes. Who is the speaker of the House now? He is the leader of the majority party. He and fellow House members, not the President, can approve any budget they want. If the President vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to.

    It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million cannot replace 545 people who stand convicted -- by present facts -- of incompetence and irresponsibility. I can't think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.

    If the tax code is unfair, it's because they want it unfair.

    If the budget is in the red, it's because they want it in the red.

    If the Army & Marines are in Iraq and Afghanistan it's because they want them in Iraq and Afghanistan ...

    If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it's because they want it that way.

    There are no insoluble government problems.

    Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power. Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical forces like "the economy," "inflation," or "politics" that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.

    Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible.

    They, and they alone, have the power.

    They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses. Provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees...

    We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!
    What you do with this article now that you have read it... is up to you.
    This might be funny if it weren't so true.
    Be sure to read all the way to the end:

    Tax his land,
    Tax his bed,
    Tax the table,
    At which he's fed.

    Tax his tractor,
    Tax his mule,
    Teach him taxes
    Are the rule.

    Tax his work,
    Tax his pay,
    He works for
    peanuts anyway!

    Tax his cow,
    Tax his goat,
    Tax his pants,
    Tax his coat.

    Tax his ties,
    Tax his shirt,
    Tax his work,
    Tax his dirt.

    Tax his tobacco,
    Tax his drink,
    Tax him if he
    Tries to think.

    Tax his cigars,
    Tax his beers,
    If he cries
    Tax his tears.

    Tax his car,
    Tax his gas,
    Find other ways
    To tax his ass.

    Tax all he has
    Then let him know
    That you won't be done
    Till he has no dough.

    When he screams and hollers;
    Then tax him some more,
    Tax him till
    He's good and sore.

    Then tax his coffin,
    Tax his grave,
    Tax the sod in
    Which he's laid...

    Put these words
    Upon his tomb,
    'Taxes drove me
    to my doom...'

    When he's gone,
    Do not relax,
    Its time to apply
    The inheritance tax.

    Accounts Receivable Tax
    Building Permit Tax
    CDL license Tax
    Cigarette Tax
    Corporate Income Tax
    Dog License Tax
    Excise Taxes
    Federal Income Tax
    Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
    Fishing License Tax
    Food License Tax
    Fuel Permit Tax
    Gasoline Tax (currently 44..75 cents per gallon)
    Gross Receipts Tax
    Hunting License Tax
    Inheritance Tax
    Inventory Tax
    IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
    Liquor Tax
    Luxury Taxes
    Marriage License Tax
    Medicare Tax
    Personal Property Tax
    Property Tax
    Real Estate Tax
    Service Charge Tax
    Social Security Tax
    Road Usage Tax
    Recreational Vehicle Tax
    Sales Tax
    School Tax
    State Income Tax
    State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
    Telephone Federal Excise Tax
    Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
    Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
    Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
    Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Charges Tax
    Telephone State and Local Tax
    Telephone Usage Charge Tax
    Utility Taxes
    Vehicle License Registration Tax
    Vehicle Sales Tax
    Watercraft Registration Tax
    Well Permit Tax
    Workers Compensation Tax


    STILL THINK THIS IS FUNNY?
    Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, & our nation was the most prosperous in the world.
    We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom, if agreed, stayed home to raise the kids.

    What in the heck happened? Can you spell 'politicians?'

    I hope this goes around THE USA at least 545 times!!! YOU can help it get there!!!

    GO AHEAD. . . BE AN AMERICAN!!!
    (more)
  • Speaker... bill 2012/03/03 12:40:51
    Speaker of the Mind
    +1
    Hell Yes!
     obama s taxes
     obama s i will steal
    government taking all you got
    obama sold us out
  • Grammar... Speaker... 2012/03/07 17:19:58
  • Speaker... Grammar... 2012/03/07 18:56:27
    Speaker of the Mind
    +1
    I do get it, Your right! They are >>>ALL<<< garbage.
  • Grammar... bill 2012/03/07 17:21:46
    Grammar Freak
    Absolutely!
    It's good to see that there are some who are seeing our nation's situation for what it is: tragic. This two-party system is not representative of our population & both "parties" are destroying us from the inside.

    Ron Paul 2012.
    Because our constitution is still our foundation.
  • Watermusicranger 2012/02/29 01:00:14
    Watermusicranger
    +1
    Republican Candidates are you going to tell your debate moderators to deal with real issues. Social issues are currently irrelevant. Defense and the economy are the real issues.
  • Texas Johnny 2012/02/28 19:59:08
    Texas Johnny
    +1
    People will always vote with their wallets instead of using their brains. They could care less who is in control as long as they have a job and have money in the bank. The second they don't have either or both, they start looking at the other schmuck hoping he will straighten things out!!
    dumb voter
  • Grammar... Texas J... 2012/03/07 17:26:39 (edited)
    Grammar Freak
    Does that sticker mean, "I think I voted" (as in, she isn't sure, but she likely pulled a leaver or punched a card in a polling booth) or does it mean, "I think. I voted," (as in, because she is a thinking person she therefor voted... the "I think therefore I am" premise)?
    Strange little sticker.
    I'm a huge fan of punctuation. It really does help get one's message across more clearly & definitively.
  • Texas J... Grammar... 2012/03/07 17:34:45
    Texas Johnny
    Well, my opinion is that she voted, but not know how she made her choices.
  • Grammar... Texas J... 2012/03/07 17:41:44
  • Texas J... Grammar... 2012/03/07 18:40:49
    Texas Johnny
    +1
    I agree with your assessment!
  • Harold 2012/02/28 19:19:30
    Harold
    They economy is in a world of hurt. I should know because it has never taken me this long to get another job. Employers are becoming more strict making it difficult for those with just a high school degree and other issues unable to get work.
  • Simi Dave 2012/02/28 18:36:02
    Simi Dave
    If the Republicans have half a brain, which is questionable a lot of the times, they will move off of these ridiculous non-issue social questions and make this the real, substantive issue. Dems, including Barry and Joey, and MSM wouldn’t give Bush any passes, and blamed him for high gas prices, a sinking economy, and the enormous deficit. Barry even suggested that Bush’s debt ceiling increase was impeachable.

    So, the economy went from sinking to failing. Can’t blame Bush for that one any more. Gas prices have doubled since Barry took office. Can’t blame Cheney and his Haliburton pals anymore. No more “blood for oil” cries. Can’t blame corporate greed. Can’t blame tensions in the middle east (DUDE, there’s been tension in the middle east for 4,000+ years!).

    The question for Santorum, Romney and Newt, are you going to tell your debate moderators to stick it in their ear and deal with real issues, or are you going to gloss over the real issues and answer the red herring questions? The three and a half front runners (yeah, I’ll tip my hat to Paul as the “half”) need to make the real issues into questions that Obama MUST answer. Social issues are currently irrelevant. Defense and the economy are the real issues of the day, and y’all are letting Obama and the MSM slide on by.
  • SodaBrain 2012/02/28 17:30:12
    SodaBrain
    Things are going to change... Big Time
    Important news for upcoming days/weeks. Please excuse interruption
    Spread the Word:
    Dark people are being and about to be arrested for crimes against Mankind. Fear is unwarranted: these herald Great and Beneficial Changes. The Galactic Federation is about to Contact Us (and eventually Land) and usher in Prosperity, Abundance, and Health. Technology will be introduced and it will Completely Upgrade Our Society Permanently. Wars will never be permitted on Earth again.
    Love and Light,
  • Risk 2012/02/28 14:39:02
    Risk
    As the election draws near, Obama will move more to the center to try and convince voters he is for more drilling and oil exploration, concerned about the budget, etc., but if he wins those convictions will all go out the window. We will see 4 more years of an administration doing everything in it's power to push head on into socialism !
  • firelooker Risk 2012/02/28 17:49:14
    firelooker
    +1
    Afraid you're right1 And all the Liberals think Obama is the Messiah. Arguing w/ them is like arguing with religous zealot's.
  • harry 2012/02/28 13:23:10
    harry
    +1
    The greedy Oil Barrons and Furtures Investors on Wall Street fear Obama will make them pay .5% more in taxes, so they raise the price of oil and gasoline to piss off voters.
    The Oil Barrons and Wall Streetians will burn in Hell.
  • USAF Vet 2012/02/28 07:05:28
    USAF Vet
    How can it be, Obama is not a Republican.
  • BwaHa 2012/02/28 05:01:22
    BwaHa
    The economy...
  • BPF53 2012/02/28 03:50:12
    BPF53
    +1
    Yes, anyone who is honest will admit this has been the worst 3+ years in America. Many will blame the previous President Bush but the Democrats had full veto proof control of both the House & Senate from 2006 to 2010 when the largest drop took place. Obama had full unprecedented control from 2008 to 2010 and did nothing to stem the downward trend in employment and the dramatic increase of the National Debt. Debt is now at 14 Trillion and America will be out of money before the November election. Sooooo YES the economy will be unless the Lame-Stream media distorts the truth again.
  • luigi1- in god we trust 2012/02/27 22:57:39 (edited)
    luigi1- in god we trust
    +2
    The media will convince everyone how much better off we are today than 4 years ago & the public will be persuaded to agree through a media disinformation campaign.
  • Lisa 2012/02/27 22:14:40
    Lisa
    +4
    I filled up my car today with Premium at the Mobil station I stopped at it was $4.39 a gallon!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    $65.65! Damn Obama !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • luigi1-... Lisa 2012/02/27 23:00:06 (edited)
    luigi1- in god we trust
    +1
    That what we get for putting Bush in the WH for a 3rd term.Bush must go in 2012.
  • Lisa luigi1-... 2012/02/28 01:19:30
    Lisa
    +1
    What! Obama did this not Bush..anyway unless you know something I don't Umm Bush is not a candidate in 2012! Obama is screwing us all now. Not anyone else!
  • Phil_will1 Lisa 2012/02/28 02:55:55
    Phil_will1
    +1
    I think what Luigi is saying is that Obama is just an extension of Bush. I don't agree with that, but that appears to be the point that he is making.
  • Lisa Phil_will1 2012/02/28 02:56:50
    Lisa
    +1
    That is nonsense!
  • BwaHa Phil_will1 2012/02/28 05:09:14 (edited)
    BwaHa
    +1
    Nope... if that's what he's saying he's wrong. Bush had his faults but obummer double downs those faults. Much of what Bush is blamed for is what was handed to him by the partisan dem controlled congress. obummer had free rein when he had both houses... he couldn't get past go so he opted to screw it up as fast as he could with "mandates" and "decrees".

    Gotta admit, he did a good job of screwing us over.
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