Most Voters Prefer A Candidate Who Lays Off The Pork
Friday, October 15, 2010
Many members of Congress pride themselves on their ability to bring home pork barrel spending, but with the mood of the voters in 2010, that may not be such a good idea.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of Likely U.S. Voters finds that 60% prefer a candidate who would work to cut federal government spending over one who would work to make sure his district gets a fair share of that spending.
Only half as many (31%) favor a candidate who would focus on getting the district its share of the spending.
Eighty-four percent (84%) of Republicans and 68% of voters not affiliated with either of the major political parties like a candidate who works to cut spending.
But 56% of Democrats disagree and opt for the candidate who will try to bring home a fair share of federal monies. Still, even 33% of those in Nancy Pelosi’s party prefer the candidate who will work to cut spending.
Not surprisingly, the gap on spending is even bigger between the Political Class and Mainstream Voters than it is between Republicans and Democrats. Seventy-four percent (74%) of Mainstream voters want a candidate who will focus on spending cuts, but 83% of those in the Political Class like a candidate more interested in getting a piece of the federal spending pie (see more about the Mainstream and Political Class divide).
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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters U.S. Voters was conducted on October 12-13, 2010 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
These results are consistent with long-held views by most voters that cutting government spending is good for the economy. Most also believe smaller deficits and lower taxes help the economy.
Sixty-one percent (61%) say cutting government spending would create more jobs than the $50 billion infrastructure plan proposed by President Obama.
At a time when the economy is the top concern for voters, this belief that spending cuts will help the economy is creating challenges for Democrats in the Midterm elections. Most voters believe that Democrats in Congress want to raise taxes and spending.
Of course, it may not matter what the candidate says his emphasis will be since voters are more cynical than ever about the promises politicians make on the campaign trail.
Additionally, 60% say most members of Congress don’t care what their constituents think anyway.
“These attitudes are part of the reason why voters voted against the party in power in 2006 and 2008 and are poised to do so again in 2010,”says Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports. “The gap between the American people and their political leaders may be bigger than at any time since the colonies had their dispute with England in the 1770s.”
Rasmussen has released two books this year, In Search of Self-Governance and Mad as Hell: How the Tea Party Movement is Fundamentally Remaking Our Two Party System.
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