Democrats, who hold slim majorities in the U.S. House and Senate, have reversed what was an average margin for Republicans earlier this year in the general vote in Congress, gaining an average advantage of one point for the incumbent party.
But as we’ll discuss first in looking at the week of politics that was, Americans aren’t as concerned about the state of the economy as perhaps Republicans would like.
You look at almost any recent poll asking Americans about their most important issue, and a plurality say it’s the economy or inflation. For example, a Fox News poll last week showed that more voters were concerned about inflation than about any other issue.
An examination of historical data reveals, however, that the percentage of Americans who say economic problems are the most important issue today is about the same as the 1988 election average.
Each month, Gallup releases data on what Americans say is the most important issue facing the country. It is an open question (meaning that respondents can say whatever they want), and they are allowed to give more than one answer.
In August, 37% of adults said a financial problem was the most important. Not a single non-economic subject came close to surpassing that. The “Poor Governance/Leadership” category was the closest at 20%. Since March, between 35% and 40% of Americans have named some economic problem (such as inflation) as their top concern.
Of course, I thought the election was “stupid economics”. So I wanted to see how this year’s findings compare to the views of Americans before the previous election. Gallup pulled the data for each election as close as they could to Election Day. They provided me with midterm and presidential data for polls up to 1988.
What surprised me was that, on average, 39% said that an economic problem is the most important. In other words, the economy is no more of a problem this year than in any other year since 1988, despite how high inflation is today.
What current polls show is not what we saw in 2008, 2010 or 2012, when 68% or more of Americans named an economic problem as their top priority. And although Gallup didn’t give me the data, a poll taken before the 1982 presidential election showed that more than 70% of Americans chose an economic problem as their top problem. 1982 is an important year from a historical perspective because it was the last time inflation rates were as high as they are now.
In fact, according to this year’s Gallup data, a collective 66% of Americans said the main problem was non-economic. Even if each issue approached the economy individually, the non-economic issues completely outweighed the economic concerns.
If this election was only about the economy, the GOP would crush it. A CNN/SSRS poll this summer showed Republicans won by more than 30 points in the general vote among voters who said they wanted congressional candidates to talk the most about the economy or inflation. But Gallup polling data shows that this year’s election, according to voters, is not just about the state of the economy.
Democrats, in a CNN poll, had a more than 30-point lead among those who chose something other than the economy as the most desired congressional candidate to talk about.
This is good news for Democrats.
Economic concerns may rise in the final weeks before election day. As each day goes by, however, the election that we thought would be mostly about the economy seems to be much more.
Americans want federally legalized same-sex marriage
A big reason the 2022 election looks like it’s about something other than the economy is the US Supreme Court ruling in June’s Roe v. It’s a decision to overturn Wade. This marked a turning point in the national political climate (in favor of the Democrats).
Eliminating federal abortion rights also fueled the movement to codify marriage itself into federal law — largely because he wrote the concurring opinion of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, who called for a review of the judge’s 2015 ruling that legalized it. -Sex marriage throughout the nation.
Make no mistake: Reversing that 2015 decision would be deeply unpopular with the American public. On the other hand, recent efforts by Congress to pass legislation to federally legalize same-sex marriage are relatively well known.
A Quinnipiac University poll conducted in late August found that 71 percent of Americans supported the 2015 Supreme Court legalization of same-sex marriage in all 50 states. Nearly half (45%) of Republican voters, 77% of independents and 89% of Democrats joined.
For some views, more Americans supported the Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage ruling, Roe v. Rather than pro-Wade, before the annulment. (That percentage was generally in the mid-60s.)
Opinions on same-sex marriage in the US have changed dramatically over the past 26 years. In 1996, 27% of Americans believed that same-sex marriage should be valid in the country. Gallup found that percentage to be 71% earlier this year.
Of course, just because you want something legal doesn’t mean you want it codified in federal law. There are many Americans who oppose abortion but do not support a federal ban.
Polls show, however, that most Americans want Congress to codify same-sex marriage federally. My polling average shows somewhere around 55% of Americans do, with about 30% opposed.
That would explain why Congress seems willing to do this. The bill that would legalize same-sex marriage has already been approved in the Chamber. The Senate has delayed voting on same-sex marriage legislation until the end of the term, although it appears likely to pass there as well.
It would take a major turn in the mid-1990s when Congress passed the Defense of Marriage Act, which for federal purposes defined marriage as the union between a man and a woman and allowed states to disallow same-sex marriages. issued by other states.
For your brief encounters: Indiana Jones is back
Google searches for Indiana Jones hit a nearly four-year high last week with the first preview of the fifth installment of the “Indiana Jones” franchise.
As I pointed out on air, it’s the only franchise that’s been around for decades and is a top performer, both at the box office and in critical acclaim.
Perhaps my favorite fact about Indiana Jones comes from a poll. A few years ago, a CBS News/Vanity Fair poll asked Americans which movie character they would want to be if they lived in a movie for a day.
The best choice was Indiana Jones, at 25%. He beat Ferris Bueller with 14%, Carrie Bradshaw (“Sex in the City”) with 12% and Don Corleone (“The Godfather”) with 11%.
My only question is what kind of person would admit to wanting to be a mobster for a day?
The historic vote of Queen Elizabeth II: Gallup notes that the late royal appeared on its list of most admired women 52 times between 1948 and 2020. No one else was on the list more than 34 times (Margaret Thatcher).
Most Americans don’t bet on sports: As more states legalize sports betting, the Pew Research Center estimates that only 19% of Americans have bet on sports in the past year. The best way to do this was privately among friends and family (15%).
The majority of Americans may not be Christian by 2070: Pew also estimates that, based on current trends, less than 50% of Americans will identify as Christian by 2070. As of 2020, it was estimated that 64% of all Americans (adults and children) were Christian.