Thursday, March 22, 2007

Poll: Support for Military Action Down (& Support for Helping Needy Up)

Link to whole NYTIMES article is in first paragraph.

"WASHINGTON (AP) -- After four years of an increasingly unpopular war, public support for an assertive military is down sharply, while support for helping the needy and concerns about the stark differences between rich and poor are on the rise, a poll found.

****also later in article

"The Pew poll that looks at public values over time found that the public's priorities have been shifting in a variety of areas over the last decade.
Among the shifts from 1994 to now:

--The number of people who believe government should help the needy has increased from 57 percent to 69 percent.

--The number who say they have ''old-fashioned values about family and marriage'' has dipped from 84 percent to 76 percent.

--The number of people who feel intensely religious has dropped -- both those who say prayer is an important part of their daily life (down 7 points to 45 percent) and those who say they never doubt the existence of God (down 11 points to 61 percent.)

"The poll of 2,007 adults was taken from Dec. 16 through Jan. 9 and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

"These shifts come at a time that the Republican Party has seen its popularity slip -- with 41 percent now having a favorable view, compared with 56 percent at the start of 2001. More than half see the Democratic Party favorably, but Democrats have lost some ground over the last six years as well.

'''The public likes Republicans less,'' Kohut said. ''It's not a matter of liking Democrats more.'' (gee i wonder why) And people have lost some confidence in their ability to handle whatever challenges they face. Not quite six in 10 now feel they can always find a way to solve their problems. Five years ago, three-fourths felt that way.

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