Populist Anger and the Midterm Elections
A presentation for Campaign for America’s Future
October 13, 2010
...
Key Findings: Political Climate
• Voters are highly pessimistic about the direction of the country, dissatisfied with bo...
More than half of Americans are pessimistic about the direction
of the country.
...
Nationally, voters are mixed on the job President Obama is doing, but they
are starting to tilt negative. They a...
Americans have equally unfavorable attitudes toward the two major parties
– intensity is key as about four in ten ...
Contributing to Congress’s low favorability is the fact that over three-
fourths of voters believe there is more bickering...
0
10
...
In a generic ballot, the Republican candidate has a
slight lead over the Democratic candidate.
...
The contempt toward Congress is leading to a strong anti-incumbent
climate. A solid majority of voters feel it is ...
Building off the anti-incumbent sentiment, four-in-ten registered voters believe a
switch in control of Congress would ...
Another major issue facing progressives this cycle is the shift toward a more
conservative electorate as a major...
Moreover, Democrats face an enthusiasm gap going into the
2010 midterm elections. Half the battle this cycle wil...
Contributing to the enthusiasm gap, young voters who turned
out in record numbers in 2008 show much less interes...
This decrease in youth engagement is even more pronounced
among young Democrats.
...
There is a clear enthusiasm gap among most groups that
compose the Rising American Electorate—all of which prop...
Voters who are engaged in this election cycle are thinking with their wallets—meaning a
further Republican advantage li...
Additionally, a majority of Americans see the economy as either
staying the same or getting worse.
The...
It’s the economy, stupid! In this issue climate, it is hard for
other issues to break through.
...
Unemployment tops the list of economic issues, followed by the
budget deficit and taxes.
...
A quarter of voters blame Bush for the current
economy, while one in five blame Wall Street.
...
The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are seen as most responsible
for the growth of the federal deficit over the pa...
A plurality of Americans are dissatisfied with the way the
federal government works, and another one in four are...
The public expresses discontent with many major institutions.
Within the context of elevated economic...
While three-in-five voters feel the government should still play an
active role in the economy, half of those voters are n...
This perception of a bleak economy comes from voters’
personal lives: a majority says its personal economic situ...
Strong majorities believe those at either end of the age spectrum and unmarried
women are most likely to have trouble mak...
Ten years ago, about three-in-ten Americans reported that they were living
paycheck-to-paycheck all or most of the...
Nearly two-thirds of Americans say either they, a family member, or someone they
know well has lost a job in the past y...
Job loss, reduced wages, or lost health insurance have impacted a significant
portion of voters—especially younger...
Six-in-ten Americans are concerned about job loss in the next twelve
months, and three in ten are very concerned about it....
A third of Americans think the stimulus was too large, and
nearly half think it has had no impact on the economy ...
Message and Positioning
Message Themes for Progressives
Approaches to Use Approaches to Avoid
Gentle...
Words Matter
Manufacturing
Green Jobs Jobs in Clean...
Words That Work: The Economy
A useful frame: People vs. Banks and CEOs
Words t...
Americans respond to messages that evoke achieving the
American Dream and strengthening the middle class.
Recap...
Top messages on the economy emphasize broad themes, such as
recapturing the American Dream and strengthening and build...
Voters respond to messages that reflect voters’ core beliefs about
Social Security: it belongs to the people and rep...
The messages that resonate most with voters reflect their core
attitudes about Social Security: it belongs to the people a...
Populist Anger and the Midterm Elections
A presentation for the Campaign for America’s Future
October 13, 2010
...
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Populist anger and midterm elections

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Transcripts - Populist anger and midterm elections

  • 1. Populist Anger and the Midterm Elections A presentation for Campaign for America’s Future October 13, 2010 Celinda Lake, Lake Research Partners Washington, DC | Berkeley, CA | New York, NY| Richmond, VA www.lakeresearch.com 202.776.9066
  • 2. Key Findings: Political Climate • Voters are highly pessimistic about the direction of the country, dissatisfied with both Parties in Congress, and angry about the lack of palpable results, especially when it comes to jobs and the economy. • Republicans hold a significant advantage in voter enthusiasm—especially among young voters, although both Republicans and Democrats in Congress receive low approval ratings. • Democrats and Republicans are ranked equally on the economy. Voters blame Bush and Wall Street more than Obama, but the election is still being framed as a referendum on the President rather than a choice between the two Parties. • The economy dominates the issue agenda. This is a jobs recession for men and a pocketbook recession for women, making voters both debt- and tax-sensitive. • Voters, primarily Republican men, are worried about the deficit and spending. Broader concern stems from people believing a lot of money has been spent with few results. • Given the economy’s dominance of the issue landscape, progressives can use successful economic frames to set the contrast. We need to offer a credible strategy for re-building the economy, but the emphasis of our message at this point in the cycle must be a clear contrast on the GOP’s record and agenda when it comes to the future direction for the economic well- being of the country and individual American families. – Key issue contrasts revolve around Social Security, trickle-down economics, and outsourcing of American jobs. 2
  • 3. More than half of Americans are pessimistic about the direction of the country. Direction of the Country Don't know, 9% Right direction, 36% Wrong direction, 57% 3 Source: NBC-Wall Street Journal. September 22-26, 2010. 1000 adults nationwide.
  • 4. Nationally, voters are mixed on the job President Obama is doing, but they are starting to tilt negative. They are far more unified, however, in their contempt for Congress—two thirds of Americans disapprove of the job Congress is doing with very high intense disapproval. Disapprove Approve Barack Obama 51 45 35 46 -5 United States -38 66 59 16 28 Congress Darker colors = intensity 4 *Politico/GWU Battleground: 1,000 likely voters nationwide – September 22, 2010 (Lake Research/Tarrance Group).
  • 5. Americans have equally unfavorable attitudes toward the two major parties – intensity is key as about four in ten strongly disapprove of the job done by both parties. This dissatisfaction with Washington is the undercurrent of the anti-incumbent mood of the electorate. Disapprove Approve Not Sure Democrats in 9 Congress 57 43 15 34 Republicans in 59 38 8 26 16 Congress Darker colors = intensity 5 *Politico/GWU Battleground: 1,000 likely voters nationwide – September 10, 2010 (Lake Research/Tarrance Group).
  • 6. Contributing to Congress’s low favorability is the fact that over three- fourths of voters believe there is more bickering in Congress than attempts to work together to address important issues facing our nation. 77% Partisan Bickering in Congress 15% 8% Working together more Same Bickering more This year, have Republicans and Democrats in Washington been working together more to solve problems OR have they been bickering and opposing one another more than usual? 6 Pew Research/National Journal Poll, 9/30/10-10/3/10
  • 7. 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 8/5-8/10 2/1-3/10 8/6-9/09 2/9-12/09 8/7-10/08 2/11-14/08 9/14-16/07 3/11-14/07 10/20-22/06 6/1-4/06 12/5-8/05 Source: Gallup Poll. Aug. 5-8, 2010. N=1,013 adults nationwide. MoE ± 4. 6/6-8/05 12/5-8/04 6/3-6/04 12/11-14/03 Disapprove % 6/12-15/03 12/5-8/02 7/9-11/02 1/7-9/02 8/3-5/01 2/1-4/01 1/7-10/00 1/15-17/99 9/11-12/98 12/18-21/97 Voters’ ratings of the job Congress is doing are at historic lows. 2/24-26/97 11/2-4/93 7
  • 8. In a generic ballot, the Republican candidate has a slight lead over the Democratic candidate. Among blue-collar voters -7 Democratic candidate 52 -20% support the Democratic candidate -71% who support the Republican candidate 45 Among white-collar voters -47% support the Democratic candidate -50% who support the Republican candidate Democratic candidate Republican candidate 8 Source: CNN/Opinion Research Corporation. October 5-7, 2010. N=1,008 adults nationwide
  • 9. The contempt toward Congress is leading to a strong anti-incumbent climate. A solid majority of voters feel it is time to give someone new a chance, and half would vote to replace every single member of Congress. Defeat and replace every member of Congress, Congress Re-Elect including your own representative? 48 49 Deserves to 31 be reelected Give new person a 56 chance Not sure 11 Yes No 9 NBC News/Wall St. Journal – August 30, 2010
  • 10. Building off the anti-incumbent sentiment, four-in-ten registered voters believe a switch in control of Congress would be a good thing. However, fewer voters believe a change would be a good thing than when Republicans controlled Congress before the 2006 midterm elections. Would a Switch in Control of Congress Be Good or Bad? 47% 40% -12 -24 28% 23% October 2010 October 2006 Good Bad If control of the Congress switched from the Democrats to the Republicans [Republicans to the Democrats in 2006] after November’s election, do you think that would be a good thing, a bad thing, or wouldn’t it make any 10 difference? Washington Post/ABC News Poll, 10/3/2010, registered voters.
  • 11. Another major issue facing progressives this cycle is the shift toward a more conservative electorate as a majority of voters (54%) identify themselves as conservatives. Since 2006, the percentage of voters identifying as conservative has increased while the percentage of voters identifying as moderate or liberal has decreased (by 10 and 3 points, respectively). Ideology of Likely Voters - 2010 Ideology of Likely Voters - 2006 Moderate, Liberal, 18% Liberal, 21% 27% Moderate, 37% Conservative Conservative 54% 42% 11 Source: Gallup. September 23-October 3, 2010. 1,882 likely voters nationwide.
  • 12. Moreover, Democrats face an enthusiasm gap going into the 2010 midterm elections. Half the battle this cycle will be getting progressives to the polls. Percent saying they are extremely likely vote in the 2010 midterm elections 69% 70% -13 56% Republicans Democrats Independents 12 Source: GWU/Politico Battleground Poll. September 19-22, 2010. N=1,000 likely voters nationwide. (Lake Research/Tarrance Group).
  • 13. Contributing to the enthusiasm gap, young voters who turned out in record numbers in 2008 show much less interest in the coming midterm elections. Percent giving a lot of thought to the elections 53% In 2008 50% 46% 45% Overall: 81% giving a 42% lot of thought to the elections -Over 30: 83% 39% -Under 30: 72% 33% 30% 31% 29% 1994 1998 2002 2006 2010 Over 30 30 and Under 13 Pew Research Center Aug 25-Sept 6, 2010, N=2,816 registered voters
  • 14. This decrease in youth engagement is even more pronounced among young Democrats. Percent giving a lot of thought to the elections Republican/Lean Republican Democra t/Lea nnDemocra titi c Democra t/Lea Democra c 67% 53% 53% 53% 53% 43% 43% 43% 49% 40% 43% 43% 43% 40% 43% 47% 47% 35% 39% 35% 31% 31% 27% 31% 31% 25% 27% 29% 28% 25% 1994 1994 1998 1998 2002 2002 2006 2006 2010 2010 1994 1998 2002 2006 2010 Over 30 Over 30 30 and Under 30 and Under Over 30 30 and Under 14 Pew Research Center Aug 25-Sept 6, 2010, N=2,816 registered voters
  • 15. There is a clear enthusiasm gap among most groups that compose the Rising American Electorate—all of which propelled Obama to a decisive win in 2008. Enthusiasm--% Extremely Likely to Vote Total 64 Black 58 Latino 36 Women 65 Men 63 Under 34 50 Seniors 65 15 Source: GWU/Politico Battleground Poll. September 19-22, 2010. N=1,000 likely voters nationwide. (Lake Research/Tarrance Group).
  • 16. Voters who are engaged in this election cycle are thinking with their wallets—meaning a further Republican advantage lies in voters perceiving them as being better to handle controlling wasteful spending, keeping taxes down, and controlling the deficit. Voters do split, however, on who is best to turn the economy around and on creating jobs. Margin (Dem minus Rep) Better to handle . . . Turning the 39% 37% 10% 8% -2 economy around Controlling wasteful spending 42% 28% 20% 8% -14 Holding down taxes 53% 26% 10% 8% -27 Sharing your values 39% 39% 10% 8% 0 Creating jobs 39% 39% 11% 8% 0 Controlling the deficit 45% 28% 16% 8% -17 16 GOP DEM Both Neither Unsure Source: Politico/GWU Battleground. September 7-9, 2010. N= 1,000 likely voters nationwide. (Lake Research/Tarrance Group).
  • 17. Additionally, a majority of Americans see the economy as either staying the same or getting worse. The Same or Worse State of the National Economy 91% 77% 73% 71% 72% 72% 69% 69% 68% 66% 68% 67% 66% 65% 65% 66% 65% 60% 56% 58% Better 41% 39% 26% 36% 33% 31% 29% 32% 32% 30% 32% 31% 29% 27% 27% 26% 26% 23% 20% 4% Februa ry Ma rch Apri l Ma y June Jul y Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec Ja n Feb Ma rch Apri l Ma y June Jul y Augus t September 17 Source: http://americanresearchgroup.com/economy/
  • 18. It’s the economy, stupid! In this issue climate, it is hard for other issues to break through. The economy 49 The federal budget deficit 11 Education 10 Health Care 9 The wars in Iraq/Afghanistan 9 Illegal immigration 6 Terrorism 3 Energy and environmental policies 1 Other 1 Unsure 1 18 Source: CNN/ Opinion Research Poll. September 21-23, 2010. N= 1,010 adults nationwide.
  • 19. Unemployment tops the list of economic issues, followed by the budget deficit and taxes. Unemployment 57 The federal budget deficit 18 Taxes 8 Mortgages and housing costs 7 Inflation 6 Stock Market 2 (Other) 1 No Opinion 1 19 Source: CNN/ Opinion Research Poll. September 21-23, 2010. N= 1,010 adults nationwide.
  • 20. A quarter of voters blame Bush for the current economy, while one in five blame Wall Street. Most Responsible for Current National Economy George W. Bush 25 Large financial firms 20 Among Independents U.S. Congress 15 -27% Large financial firms -13% George W. Bush Barack Obama 11 -13% Global economic forces -11% Congress Global economic forces 10 -6% Normal economic cycle -6% Barack Obama Normal economic cycle 8 20 Source: Politico/GWU Battleground. September 7-9, 2010. N= 1,000 likely voters nationwide. (Lake Research/Tarrance Group).
  • 21. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are seen as most responsible for the growth of the federal deficit over the past few years. Most responsible for growth of federal deficit Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan 49 Bailouts of big banks and auto industry 36 Lobbyists and special interests putting unneeded spending in the budget 31 Bush tax cuts for corporations and top earners 29 President Obama's economic recovery or stimulus plan 28 The economic recession that cut tax revenue and required support for the unemployed 8 The cost of the Medicare Prescription Drug benefit 6 21 Source: Democracy Corps, Campaign for America's Future. July 26-29, 2010. N=1,100 likely voters nationwide . (Greenburg Quinlan Rosner)
  • 22. A plurality of Americans are dissatisfied with the way the federal government works, and another one in four are angry. 52 77 22 25 20 2 Enthusiastic Satisfied Dissatisfied Angry 22 Source: Washington Post/ABC. Aug 30-Sep 2, 2010. N=1,002 adults nationwide.
  • 23. The public expresses discontent with many major institutions. Within the context of elevated economic anxiety, banks, Congress, HMOs, organized labor and big business receive the highest criticism. Views of Institutions 76% 66% 59% 48% 40% 36% 36% 34% 27% 25% 23% 22% 20% 19% 19% 11% The military Supreme The church or Organized The medical Management presidency Organizations The police The public Television Newspapers Banks Congress The U.S. justice system business Big business The criminal Court Small organized schools labor news system religion Health The 23 Source: Gallup, July 8-11, 2010, N=1,020.
  • 24. While three-in-five voters feel the government should still play an active role in the economy, half of those voters are not sure they can trust the government to be effective. Government's Role in the Economic Situation 60% 32% 33% 28% Government is not the solution Government should play an active Government should play an active role, but can't trust role Which of the following comes closest to your view regarding the proper role of government in the economy?...In the current economic environment, government is not the solution to our economic problems, government is the problem. I would like to see government play an active role in the economy to ensure it benefits people like me, but I am not sure that I can trust government to do this effectively. In the current economic environment, the government must play an active role in regulating the marketplace and ensuring that the economy benefits people 24 like me. Allstate/National Journal Heartland Monitor Poll, Apr, 2010
  • 25. This perception of a bleak economy comes from voters’ personal lives: a majority says its personal economic situation is only fair or poor. Personal Economic Situation 58% 38% 20% 6% Excellent/Good Only Fair/Poor *Darker colors indicate intensity How would you rate your own personal economic financial situation? Would you say you are in 25 excellent shape, good shape, only fair shape, or poor shape financially? Source: Pew Research Center/National Journal Congressional Connection Poll, June 3 - 6, 2010, N=1,002.
  • 26. Strong majorities believe those at either end of the age spectrum and unmarried women are most likely to have trouble making ends meet. Majorities also believe that working and middle class families have trouble making ends meet, but these views are less intense. From your perspective, how much trouble making ends meet do you think each of the following groups faces: a lot of trouble, some, a little, or no trouble at all?* Trouble Making Ends Meet Young adults 56% 85% Senior citizens 53% 85% Unmarried women 53% 82% Blacks or African Ams 44% 76% Working families 43% 84% Middle-class families 41% 82% Latinos or Hispanics 37% 71% Women 36% 79% A lot Some 26 Source: Wider Opportunities for Women. 1,000 adults nationwide, with oversamples of 100 African-American adults, 100 Latino adults, and 100 adults with incomes $10,000-15,000 annually. May 20-27, 2010. (Lake Research Partners)
  • 27. Ten years ago, about three-in-ten Americans reported that they were living paycheck-to-paycheck all or most of the time. Last year, that number increased to four-in-ten, and now it’s up to 44%. The current data shows that it is also more common for women (47%) to be living paycheck-to- paycheck than it is for men (40%). Frequency of Living Paycheck to Paycheck* 2010 -54% -15% -20% 24% 44% 2009 -58% -17% -21% 23% 39% 2000 -71% -24% -22% 15% 28% Never Hardly ever/once in a while Sometimes/Some of the time Always/All of the time Most of the time Consumer Federation of America/Bank of America: September 11-November 11, 2000 (1,637 adults nationwide); Newsweek: January 14-January 15, 2009 (1,200 adults nationwide); LRP survey for Community Voices: January-February 2010 (1,000 adults nationwide, 27 100 Latinas, 100 African American women, 100 single mothers, 200 low-income women) * Note wording change in answer categories.
  • 28. Nearly two-thirds of Americans say either they, a family member, or someone they know well has lost a job in the past year. Nearly as many Americans say they have been impacted by a reduction in wages or hours, with a strong majority saying they, a family member, or someone they know well has experienced this hardship in the past year. Impact of the Recession Impacted you 63% Impacted you personally: 12% 58% personally: 15% Impacted a family Impacted a family member: 23% member: 23% 38% 33% Loss of a job Reduced wages or hours Impacted you, a family member or someone you know well Has not impacted I'm going to read you a list of economic experiences some people have recently had. For each one, please tell me if you have directly experienced this in the last year, if your family has directly experienced this in the last year, or if someone 28 you know well, like a friend, neighbor or co-worker, has experienced this or if no one you know well has experienced it. Democracy Corps Poll, September 2010. N=1000 voters ntationwide.
  • 29. Job loss, reduced wages, or lost health insurance have impacted a significant portion of voters—especially younger, blue-collar voters. Have you or your family... Lost job Reduced wages 59% Lost health ins. 51% 44% 41% 39% 38% 34% 28% 27% Total Blue-collar White voters, Blue-collar White voters, 50 younger than 50 or older 29 Democracy Corps, August 2010
  • 30. Six-in-ten Americans are concerned about job loss in the next twelve months, and three in ten are very concerned about it. Job Loss Concern 60% concerned 39% 31% 29% Very concerned Somewhat concerned Not concerned at all How concerned are you that in the next 12 months you or someone else in your household might be out of work and looking for a job--very concerned, somewhat concerned, or not concerned at all? 30 CBS News Poll, July 2010, N=966.
  • 31. A third of Americans think the stimulus was too large, and nearly half think it has had no impact on the economy so far. Government's Stimulus Package Stimulus Impact on Economy Made it Better 30% Made it 34% 20% 27% 28% Worse 11% No impact 46% Too Not About Don't large large right know Don't know 4% enough 31 CBS News/New York Times: 990 adults nationwide – September 10-14, 2010
  • 32. Message and Positioning
  • 33. Message Themes for Progressives Approaches to Use Approaches to Avoid Gentle and realistic optimism; we have a Over-selling the accomplishments of difficult road ahead, but we’re starting to Democrats in office. take the steps we need. Populist language. Government should work Talking about the “less fortunate,” for regular families, not multi-millionaires government programs to help those in need. and CEOs. Righteous indignation based on the Accepting frames of debate based on American values of fairness and opportunity. smaller questions. Instead of talking about Make the wealthy pay their fair share, shift whether business should have emissions the burden off of the middle class, allow regulated, talk about the right to clean air that everyone has the opportunity to and water, and the principle that polluters succeed. should pay to clean up their mess. A willingness to fight for what’s right and Talking about policy minutia or using take a stand, even if it’s politically unpopular. acronyms. 33
  • 34. Words Matter Manufacturing Green Jobs Jobs in Clean Energy Guaranteed, Universal Quality, Coverage Affordable Health Care The Middle Working Families Class 34
  • 35. Words That Work: The Economy A useful frame: People vs. Banks and CEOs Words to Use Words to Avoid Everyone paying their fair share Taxes Making the economy work for working families Welfare and subsidies Getting and keeping good-paying jobs Incentivizing development Making sure our workers are trained for 21st- Funding technical education century jobs Accountability Regulations Rooting out waste Cutting programs Government that serves everyone, not CEOs Government programs and multimillionaires Get rid of tricky loopholes and hidden fees Banking regulations 35
  • 36. Americans respond to messages that evoke achieving the American Dream and strengthening the middle class. Recapturing the American Dream - 53% 76% w/o Seniors* Strengthen Middle Class* 52% 82% Recapturing American Dream-w/ 52% 79% Seniors* 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% Very convincing Somewhat convincing 36
  • 37. Top messages on the economy emphasize broad themes, such as recapturing the American Dream and strengthening and building the middle class. TEXT OF MESSAGES • [Recapturing the American Dream – Family Economic Security without seniors] The American Dream is about having family economic security and the opportunity to succeed with hard work. In this country we work hard as individuals to get ahead for ourselves and our families and to provide a better chance for the next generation. Family economic security is about a good-paying, secure job, affordable healthcare, and a secure retirement. It’s about more than living paycheck to paycheck. We need to build the middle class and recapture the American Dream by creating good-paying, secure jobs, providing affordable, quality healthcare, and investing in education and training. • [Strengthen and Build to the Middle Class] The current economic downturn has hit working families the hardest and the longest. Even as they continue to work hard and act responsibly, more and more families are living paycheck to paycheck and are increasingly on the edge of economic crisis. Our economy will only be strong again when our working and middle class families are strong. This means not only helping middle class families reclaim their sense of economic security and strengthening the middle class, but also helping low-income and working families move into the middle class through jobs that come with good wages, benefits, and secure retirement. • [Recapturing the American Dream – Economic Security w/ Seniors] The American Dream is about having family economic security and the opportunity to succeed with hard work. In this country, we work hard as individuals to get ahead for ourselves and our families and to provide a better chance for the next generation. Family economic security is about a good-paying, secure job, affordable healthcare, and a secure retirement. It’s about more than living paycheck to paycheck. We need to build the middle class, protect our senior citizens who have worked hard all their lives, and recapture the American Dream by creating good, secure jobs, providing affordable, quality healthcare, and investing in 37 education and training.
  • 38. Voters respond to messages that reflect voters’ core beliefs about Social Security: it belongs to the people and represents a promise made to all generations that must be protected and paid back. Five: Represents your values extremely well *Belongs to the people 80% *Prioritize paying SS back first/bailout 69% *Broken promise 66% *Other priorities/Wall Street 64% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 38 *Split-sampled questions: On a scale that goes from 0 to 5, where 0 means it doesn’t represent your values and positions at all and 5 means it represents your values and positions extremely well, how well does this statement represent your values and positions.
  • 39. The messages that resonate most with voters reflect their core attitudes about Social Security: it belongs to the people and represents a promise made to all generations that must be protected and paid back. TEXT OF MESSAGES • [Belongs to the people] Social Security moneys belong to the people who have worked hard all their lives and contributed to the program, not to the government. We must protect Social Security from cuts that will hurt beneficiaries, we cannot let Congress try to use Social Security as a piggy bank. (80% saying “5: represents values extremely well”) • [Prioritize paying back SS first/bailout] Social Security has a funding gap in the future and that gap needs to be closed. The disagreement in Washington is what to do about it. The answer is pretty clear: The federal government has to pay back the $2.6 trillion it took from the Social Security trust fund. Before Congress even thinks about cutting Social Security benefits, the government must pay back the money it owes the trust fund. We cannot accept that the government has the money to bail out Wall Street banks, but not to pay back Social Security. (69% saying “5: represents values extremely well”) • [Broken promise] Social Security is a promise made to all generations to provide a basic and reliable income for when they retire, become widowed or disabled, or leave loved ones behind. Americans need to know the promise of Social Security will continue to be met for them. This is one promise we cannot allow Congress to break. We need to make sure we continue to support Social Security without making cuts that will harm current and future generations (Broken Promise: 66% saying “5: represents values extremely well”) • [Other priorities/Wall Street] Washington should be thinking about getting Americans back to work, protecting Americans from predatory lenders and changing unscrupulous business practices on Wall Street. We shouldn’t expect middle and low income Americans, in the middle of the largest recession since the 1930’s, to have their Social Security cut. We should ask Wall Street bankers to give back their bonuses and we should put a tax on 39 Wall Street, not cut Social Security benefits. (64% saying “5: represents values extremely well”)
  • 40. Populist Anger and the Midterm Elections A presentation for the Campaign for America’s Future October 13, 2010 Celinda Lake, Lake Research Partners Washington, DC | Berkeley, CA | New York, NY| Richmond, VA www.lakeresearch.com 202.776.9066

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