In looking through the CBS Survey that was released last night there are a couple of very interesting results. First let’s put the sample in context. In the survey 25% were Republicans, 38% were Democrats, and 37% were Independents. In contrast the media exit polls for the House level had Republicans at 33%, Democrats at 40%, and Independents at 28%. So the CBS survey gives Democrats a +13 advantage as opposed to the exit polls that had the Democrat advantage at 7%.
1. Support for the stimulus bill has slipped quite a bit going from 63-24 in January to 51-39 in this survey. That means the margin went from +39 to +12, a significant shift. Additionally, Independents are evenly split with 45% approving and 44% disapproving.
2. In terms of shortening the recession, 39% of the electorate think it will while 45% do not.
3. In looking at the need for bipartisan support, versus Democrats only, 81% think it is important for the bill to have support of both parties, while 13% say it is OK for it pass just on Democrat support.
4. Obama’s Job approval is 62-15, while Pelosi’s fav-unf is 10-30, and among Independents she is at 9-36 (they ask ID slightly differently than other surveys).
5. Congressional Republicans are at 32-60, while Congressional Democrats are at 48-43. Among Independents Republicans are at 29-59, and Democrats are at 43-46.
6. Perhaps the most interesting finding is that the survey shows that Americans prefer tax cuts over increased government spending by almost a 3:1 margin to get us out of the recession. They asked the question two different ways. First was contrasting increased government spending versus reducing taxes on business. In that matchup 22% said increased government spending and 59% said reduced taxes for business. Among Independents that margin increased to 13-65. Even Democrats slightly preferred the cutting business taxes by a 40-43 margin. The second way the question was posed was contrasting increasing government spending versus reducing taxes. In that form 16% of the electorate preferred increasing government spending and 62% said cutting taxes. Among Independents it was 13-57, and among Democrats it was 20-59. To quote the CBS press release on the survey:
“There is evidence Americans might accept some of what the Republicans in Congress are proposing. Given achoice between higher government spending and tax cuts for business, Americans choose tax cuts: 59% say that is a better approach towards trying to end the recession.”
To view a PDF of the excerpt from the CBS News poll, click here.