Gore's Poll Numbers Dip (3/14/97)
Public Supports Budget Deal By 2-1 Margin
But new survey reveals a deep skepticism it actually will lead to a balanced budget by 2002
By Keating Holland/CNN
WASHINGTON (May 8) -- By a 50-26 percent margin, the American public favors the budget agreement announced last week by President Bill Clinton and Republican leaders in Congress, a new CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll shows.
But an overwhelming majority of Americans -- roughly eight in 10 -- do not believe the deal will actually result in a balanced federal budget by the year 2002, and six in 10 say that the agreement unfairly benefits some groups at the expense of others.
By a 48-31 percent margin Americans think the budget agreement will be bad for senior citizens, but the same proportion of Americans think the agreement will be good for them personally. Most of the tax cuts in the agreement are very popular, although the capital gains tax cut, though favored by a majority, is significantly less well-liked than the others.
By a small margin, the public opposes the small reductions in Social Security cost-of-living adjustments which would results from changes in the Consumer Price Index.
The numbers are based on interviews with 1,019 adult Americans conducted May 6-7. The survey has a margin of sampling error of +/- 3 percentage points for most of the questions.
Here are the numbers:
Who Prevailed In Budget Talks?
Who won this round of budget talks? The public is almost evenly divided on that. By a narrow 39-36 percent margin, the public thinks that the Republicans in Congress got more of what they wanted than Clinton did, and by an equally small margin the public considers the GOP more responsible than Clinton for reaching a budget agreement at all.
But by a 47-41 percent margin, Americans say they trust Clinton more than the Republicans in Congress on the federal budget. By an even wider margin, the public trusts the Democrats in Congress on the budget more than the GOP.
Here are the numbers:
Has the budget agreement helped either Clinton or the GOP? Not really, it appears. Clinton's approval rating is up slightly since mid-April, but more Americans disapprove than approve of how he is handling the deficit, taxes and Medicare. The agreement appears to have improved Clinton's standing with the public on these issues only by a point or two. Congress' approval rating has also risen only slightly since April, while Clinton continues to maintain about a 3-2 advantage over Congress when it comes to approval ratings.
Clinton And The Economy
Clinton's approval rating on the economy is still high, and half the country says that economic conditions are getting better. Overall, 46 percent say economic conditions are excellent or good, making this the most optimistic spring in the past five years.
President Clinton Is America's Most Admired Man (12/30/97)
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