The Winston Group is a strategy and research firm dedicated to making ideas matter.

Roll Call: “Democratic debate moderators haven’t done American voters any favors”

by Caitlin Peartree

The Winston Group’s David Winston on the latest Democratic Presidential Primary debate:

It’s not a surprise that the last debate didn’t move voters. Unlike the moderators, most Americans haven’t signed on to these progressive proposals that represent the largest redistribution of wealth in the nation’s history and would turn our current economic system upside down.

Read the rest here.

Roll Call: “This isn’t Nancy Pelosi’s first impeachment rodeo”

by Caitlin Peartree

The WG’s David Winston writes about the potential consequences for Democrats of focusing on impeachment, comparing it to Republicans’ pursuit of impeachment in 1998, in Wednesday’s Roll Call:

I suppose some cynics out there might question the speaker’s sincerity, wondering if her anti-impeachment stance is more political posturing than definitive pronouncement. But Nancy Pelosi has been to this rodeo before. She watched Republicans struggle to find an impeachment strategy that voters would understand and accept, and my guess is that she doesn’t want to end up in the same unenviable position.

Read the full article here.

Roll Call: “The Capitalism vs. Socialism Debate: Bring It On”

by Caitlin Peartree

The WG’s David Winston writes for Roll Call on the political implications of the current debate between capitalism and socialism:

So maybe this is exactly the debate we need, as more and more Democrats seem to believe that it’s time for America to move even further left toward an economic system that will inevitably change the very character and future of this nation, and not for the better. Socialism is slowly making a comeback, a cultural shift that should concern political and business leaders of both parties.

Read the full article here.

NFL Brand – Structural Change or Mild Improvement?

by Emily O'Connor

The newest monthly WG Sports Survey (November 29-30) found that the NFL brand improved very slightly, going from 44% favorable – 40% unfavorable in October to 48% favorable – 38% unfavorable. While this is a slight improvement, favorability is well below where it was in August when it was 57% favorable – 23% unfavorable. The question is whether this is a small start back toward the original brand standing, or a settling-in process for the new brand standing of the NFL with the public.

 

Roll Call: “Bottom of the Ninth”

by Emily O'Connor

The WG’s David Winston writes for Roll Call on what outcomes matter to an electorate that feels this is the “bottom of the ninth” for the middle class:

…In the end, there are two numbers that will matter most in the 2018 election: How many jobs have been created and how much have wages gone up? Transformational tax reform legislation is essential to create the kind of economic growth that delivers both. This is a battle Republicans must win — on the floor and in homes and businesses across the country.

Principles are important. But you can’t win without outcome-based policy products that connect with people.

NFL – Brand Struggles Continue

by Emily O'Connor

There was no comeback for the NFL’s brand in October after significant slippage in September.

The newest monthly WG Sports Survey has found the NFL with the same 44% favorable – 40% unfavorable brand numbers in its October 31 – November 1 survey (1,000 registered voters), giving the NFL significantly higher unfavorables than any other major sport. This latest data adds to concerns that the impact of the events over the last two months may represent a longer term change in the overall public’s view of the NFL. Even more problematic, the survey found that almost a third of the NFL’s potential “fan base” (people who watched at least 2 games in a season) have a negative view of the league.

Get the full analysis here.

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Discussion Points: Issues Driving the Electorate

by David Winston

In the most recent survey for Winning the Issues (July 5-6, 1000 registered voters), we updated the list of issues and news stories in how they are driving voting decisions for next year’s mid-term elections. The chart below shows how each item was ranked on Election Day, in March, and this week. Economy/jobs remains the most important issue on the list, which is consistent with what we observed on Election Day and back in March. The issue that continues to be a close second on the list is need to get things done in Washington and get the parties to work together.

Issue Rankings Chart

Foreign policy (#3 and #5 on the list) and tax issues (#4 and #6) continue to be significant factors in voting decisions. However, news stories being heavily covered by the media – including stories about White House ethics scandals (#18) and allegations of Trump ties to Russia (#20) – are lesser priorities in voting decisions at the moment. As shown in these results over time, the electorate is remarkably consistent in their priorities.


	

WG Discussion Points: The Future of Health Care

by David Winston

As part of the immediate discussions about how to deal with problems in the health care system, the future of health care and the opportunities that exist should be a key part of those discussions.

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On Point Radio and Diane Rehm Show: The 2016 Campaign

by Emily O'Connor

This past week, the WG’s David Winston was a guest on NPR’s On Point and The Diane Rehm Show. Here are a few highlights:

NYT: “Peril, Promise of Clinton Candidacy Both on Display Lately”

by Emily O'Connor

In an article that discussed opportunities and challenges facing likely presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, the WG’s David Winston commented:

Republican pollster David Winston said the idea of a female president holds obvious appeal but can only be taken so far.

“It gives her an opportunity to be listened to that will be helpful to her,” says Winston, “but she’s got to do something with that opportunity.”

The article also dealt with the dynamics of managing controversies past and present:

“The thing about having baggage is that it’s something you always have to manage,” Winston says. “What she’s got to do, and she obviously struggled with it this week, is how do you manage it in such a way that it allows you to say the things you want to say?”

Read the rest of the article here.

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