4/26: Weighing the Value of a College Education

April 26, 2016 by  
Filed under Family Finances, Featured, Money, Money Vault

A majority of Americans, including parents with children under 18 years of age, think college is worth the price tag, and many consider a college education to be important for both future earning potential and personal growth and experience, according to an Exclusive Point Taken-Marist Poll, commissioned by WGBH Boston for its new late-night, multi-platform PBS debate series Point Taken.  However, three in four U.S. residents consider the cost of a college education to be out of reach for most American families.

The national survey was conducted by The Marist Poll in advance of this week’s Point Taken episode, airing Tuesday, April 26, 2016 at 11:30pmET (check local listings) and streaming on pbs.org/pointtaken. The series is hosted by Carlos Watson, Emmy Award winning journalist and OZY Media co-founder and CEO.

55% of Americans, including 51% of parents, think college is worth the cost, and more than three in four Americans consider college education to be essential.  In fact, 77% of residents perceive a college degree to be key to future success, and the same proportion thinks the need for a college degree equals the importance of a high school diploma for an earlier generation.  Similar proportions of parents share these views.

Not surprisingly, Americans with a four-year college degree, 68%, are more likely than those without such a degree, 47%, to report that a college education is worth the price tag.  Those with a degree, 88%, as well as those who earn $50,000 or more annually, 81%, are also more likely than those without a degree, 70%, or those who earn less than $50,000, 73%, to consider a college education to be key to future success.  Gender differences are also present.  Women, 61%, are more likely than men, 49%, to say college is worth the price tag.

“While there are concerns about the cost, Americans still see the value of a college education,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.

“For decades, a college education has been viewed as a ladder to success,” says Denise DiIanni, series creator and Executive-in-Charge.  ”And this week’s Point Taken will delve into the data, the perceptions and realities of its value.

Six in ten Americans, 60%, believe that, without a college degree, jobs are limited. Non-white residents, 67%, are more likely than white residents, 56%, to report jobs are limited for those without a college degree.  Americans who receive an annual salary of $50,000 or more, 42%, are more likely than those who make less, 32%, to disagree.

Americans do divide, however, about whether learning a trade or skill provides greater earning potential, 42%, than receiving a college education, 46%.  Men, 47%, are more likely than women, 37%, to think that learning a trade or skill allows a person to earn more money than going to college.  Generationally, millennials, 32%, are less likely than older generations to have this view.

Aside from the financial benefits of a college education, more than two-thirds of Americans, including 70% of parents, report the personal growth and experience of a college education is worth the cost.  Here, too, residents with a college degree, 74%, and women, 72%, are more likely than those without a four-year education, 62%, and men, 61%, to have this view.  Millennials, 73%, are more likely than Baby Boomers, 62%, and members of the Silent-Greatest Generation, 60%, to say the growth and experience of a college education is worth the price tag.

Looking at the overall impact of a college education, 78% of Americans with a four-year degree report their life would be worse if they did not have that degree.  While a plurality of residents without a four-year college degree, 48%, say their life would be no different if they had that education, 44% say it would be better, and only 4% report it would be worse.

While many Americans perceive a college education to be a worthwhile investment, three in four residents, 75%, think the cost of a college degree is out of reach for most American families.  However, millennials, 30%, are more likely than their older counterparts to believe the cost of a college education is within reach.  Still, 67% of millennials report the cost of a college degree is out of reach for most Americans.

However, 65% of Americans, including the same proportion of parents, say college is worth the financial risk, despite the amount of debt students will take on, because of the future earnings potential and career opportunities.  Again, residents with a college degree, 75%, and women, 71%, are more likely than those without a degree, 58%, and men, 58%, to have this view.  Millennials, 72%, are more likely than those in the Silent-Greatest generation, 58%, to report the cost of college is worth the financial risk.

Complete April 26, 2016 USA Exclusive Point Taken – Marist Poll Release
Complete April 26, 2016 USA Exclusive Point Taken – Marist Poll Banners (Banner 1: Gender, Race, Age, Education, Income)
Complete April 26, 2016 USA Exclusive Point Taken – Marist Poll Banners (Banner 2: Generation, Party ID, Ideology)
Marist Poll Methodology
Marist Poll Nature of the Sample and Complete Tables

 

4/24: PA: Trump and Clinton with Double-Digit Leads

In the contest for the Republican presidential nomination in Pennsylvania, businessman Donald Trump, 45%, outpaces Texas Senator Ted Cruz, 27%, by 18 points among likely Republican primary voters statewide.  Ohio Governor John Kasich follows with 24%.  Trump leads his rivals among many key demographic groups.  Of note, Trump and Cruz are competitive among white evangelical Christians and those who describe themselves as very conservative.  Trump and Kasich vie for likely GOP voters who are college graduates or moderates.

Six in ten Republican likely primary voters with a candidate preference, 60%, say they strongly support their choice of candidate.  Among those who support Trump, 72% report they are firmly committed to their choice.  This compares with 52% of Cruz’s backers and 47% of Kasich’s supporters who express the same level of support.

Looking at the second choice candidate of likely Republican primary voters with a candidate preference, Kasich, 40%, is the most mentioned followed by Cruz, 30%.  18% say Trump is their second choice candidate for the Republican nomination.

“Trump and Clinton are both positioned to win the popular vote,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “For the Democrats, it’s all about delegate counts.  But, for the Republicans, the popular vote doesn’t guarantee a big chunk of the delegates at the convention.  Many will not be committed to a candidate after Tuesday and will need convincing.”

In the race for the Democratic nomination for president, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, 55%, has a 15 point lead over Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, 40%, among likely Democratic primary voters in Pennsylvania.  Clinton does especially well among likely Democratic primary voters who are 45 years of age or older or are African American.  Sanders does best among first-time voters, those who are under 45 years old, or those who identify as very liberal.  While Clinton leads Sanders by 28 points among women, Sanders, 49%, and Clinton, 45%, are competitive among men.

Seven in ten likely Democratic primary voters with a candidate preference, 70%, say they strongly support their choice of candidate.  Similar proportions of Clinton’s supporters, 71%, and Sanders’ backers, 68%, report they will not waver in their commitment to their candidate.

In hypothetical general election contests, Clinton and Sanders have the advantage over their potential Republican rivals, with one exception.  When Clinton, 45%, and Kasich, 48%, are paired against each other, the two are competitive among Pennsylvania registered voters.  In each of these potential general election contests, Sanders outperforms Clinton against the Republicans.

On the statewide level, 45% of Pennsylvania adults approve of Governor Tom Wolf’s job performance.  40% disapprove, and 15% are unsure.  Looking at the approval rating of Senator Pat Toomey, 42% approve of how he is doing his job, 28% disapprove, and a notable 30% are unsure.

What effect, if any, will the controversy surrounding the confirmation hearings for Merrick Garland, President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, have on Toomey’s re-election bid in November?  If Toomey agrees with his Republican colleagues to deny Garland confirmation hearings, a plurality of registered voters, 45%, say it will make no difference to their vote.  But, more than one in three, 34%, reports they would be less inclined to support Toomey.  18% say they would be more likely to vote for him.  If Toomey disagrees with his Republican colleagues and wants to hold confirmation hearings now, a majority, 54%, reports it will not influence whom they will support for the U.S. Senate.  More than one in four voters, 26%, think it would make them more likely to cast their ballot for Toomey.  17% say it would make them less likely to do so.

Pennsylvania adults divide about President Obama’s job performance.  49% of residents, including 82% of likely Democratic primary voters, approve of how the president is doing his job.  46% disapprove.

Complete April 24, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll Release of Pennsylvania

Complete April 24, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Pennsylvania (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete April 24, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Pennsylvania (Likely Republican Primary Voters)

Complete April 24, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Pennsylvania (Likely Democratic Primary Voters)

Marist Poll Methodology for Pennsylvania

Nature of the Sample for Pennsylvania

 

4/19: Majority Opposes Increased Numbers of Refugees, But…

A majority of Americans do not believe that the United States should allow more refugees into the country, according to an Exclusive Point Taken-Marist Poll, commissioned by WGBH Boston for its new late-night, multi-platform PBS debate series Point Taken.  However, about half of Americans think the United States has a moral obligation to aid refugees and do not think they pose a significant threat to the nation.  The issue at hand is the number of refugees allowed into the country.  Tolerance for allowing those seeking asylum has grown over the last 80 years, and today, millennials are among those who are most lenient.

The national survey was conducted by The Marist Poll in advance of this week’s Point Taken episode, airing Tuesday April 19, 2016 at 11pmET (check local listings) and streaming on pbs.org/pointtaken. The series is hosted by Carlos Watson, Emmy Award winning journalist and OZY Media co-founder and CEO.

A majority of Americans, 53%, think the United States should take in fewer refugees than it currently does while 35% report the nation should allow more refugees into the country.  40% of U.S. residents consider refugees to be a significant threat to the United States compared with 51% who disagree.  Among those who see refugees as a threat, more than two-thirds, 67%, perceive the nature of the threat to be terrorism as opposed to, economic, 19%, or cultural, 11%.

By about two to one, Millennials, 54%, are much more likely than members of any other generation to think more refugees should be allowed into the United States, and they are the least likely to consider refugees to be a threat.  Differences based on education are also present.  A majority of non-college graduates, 57%, think fewer refugees should be allowed into the country.  Residents with a college degree divide.  46% think fewer refugees should be allowed into the country while 44% believe more should be permitted.  And, by nearly two-to-one, those without a college education, 48%, are more likely than college graduates, 25%, to consider refugees to be a threat to the country.  Men, 46%, are also more likely than women, 34%, to say refugees are a threat to the nation.

“The issue of allowing refugees into this country is a complex one,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. “Americans are torn between what they feel should be done ethically and their concerns for security.”

“These results show the many and varied viewpoints Americans have.  Tonight’s Point Taken broadcast, which will include social media contributions, is a great opportunity to continue the dialogue,” says Denise DiIanni, series creator and Executive-in-Charge.

While a majority of Americans oppose opening the borders to more refugees, half of residents, 50%, think the United States is not legally but is morally required to take in refugees.  But, tolerance for permitting refugees into the United States has also increased since the late 1930’s.

A majority of U.S. residents, 53%, believe Syrian refugees should be encouraged or allowed to come to the United States.  Included here, are 25% who say we should welcome refugees even if the country needs to increase the level of immigrants allowed into the country and 28% who think the U.S. should allow refugees but do not support raising the quotas.  35% of residents think refuges should be kept out of the United States given the nation’s current conditions.  In a 1938 Roper/Fortune Survey, only 23% of Americans encouraged or wanted to allow political refugees from countries such as Germany and Austria to enter the United States, and of those, only 5% supported raising immigration quotas.

When asked the question of whether Syrian refugees should be temporarily banned from entering the United States or if the nation should continue its current policy toward these refugees, nearly half of residents today, 49%, favor the status quo.  43% support a temporary ban.

Millennials are more likely than their older cohorts to assert the United States has a moral obligation to take in refugees, 61%, to think we should encourage or allow refugees to come to the United States, 68%, and to believe the U.S. policy toward Syrian refugees should remain the same, 66%.  College graduates, 62%, and women, 58%, are more likely than non-college graduates, 44%, and men, 43%, to say the U.S. is morally required to allow refugees into the country.  Those with a college degree, 58%, and women, 56%, are also more likely than their counterparts to say Syrian refugees should not be temporarily banned form the country.

On the question of whether Syrian refugees should be encouraged or allowed to enter the United States, college graduates, 69%, are more likely than non-college graduates, 43%, to have this view.  Women, 57%, are more likely than men, 49%, to say refugees should enter the United States.

Six in ten Americans, 60%, say, if they were a member of the incoming Congress, they would vote against a bill to increase the number of Syrian refugees allowed to enter the United States.  33% would vote for such a bill.  However, tolerance has grown.  When the Roper/Fortune Survey asked a similar question about European refugees in 1939, 83% said they would not support such a bill for political refugees.

While millennials, 47%, college graduates, 43%, and women, 40%, are more likely than their counterparts to support such a bill, 48% of millennials, 50% of college graduates, 53% of women say they would vote against the legislation.

Complete April 19, 2016 USA Exclusive Point Taken – Marist Poll Release
 
Complete April 19, 2016 USA Exclusive Point Taken – Marist Poll Banners (Banner 1: Gender, Race, Age, Education, Income) 
Complete April 19, 2016 USA Exclusive Point Taken – Marist Poll Banners (Banner 2: Generation, Party ID, Ideology) 
Marist Poll Methodology 
Marist Poll Nature of the Sample and Complete Tables
 

4/19: Baseball Fans Support Adding Protective Netting in MLB Stadiums

April 19, 2016 by  
Filed under Baseball, Featured, Sports, Sports Bench

A majority of American baseball fans think Major League Baseball teams should be required to add protective netting to ballparks in areas close to the field in order to prevent fans from being hit by foul balls and bats.  When it comes to personal preference about whether they would choose to sit behind such netting, a majority of baseball fans report they would rather sit in an unprotected section.  However, fans are more likely to say they want to sit behind protective netting when sitting in seats close to the field or attending a game with children.

54% of baseball fans, including 51% of those who have attended a Major League Baseball game, support adding protective netting to areas close to the field.  Gender, age, and racial differences exist.  While 60% of women support such protective measures, men divide 48% in favor to 49% opposed.  Also of note, fans 45 years of age or older, 60%, are more likely than younger fans, 46%, to say netting should be installed.

On the question of fan preference, 54% of baseball fans say they would prefer to sit in a section of the ballpark without protective netting.  Again, demographic differences exist.  While 55% of women report they would rather sit in seats with the netting, only 29% of men say the same.  Fans 60 and older, 54%, are more likely than younger fans to choose a seat shielded from foul balls and bats.  Those 18 to 29 years old, 32%, and fans 30 to 44 years of age, 31%, are the least likely to have this preference.

When proximity to the field enters the picture, opinions change.  If sitting above the dugout or along the baselines, half of baseball fans, 50%, say they would prefer to sit in an area protected by netting compared with 47% who would not.  However, a gender gap remains.  61% of women, compared with 41% of men, would opt to sit in the protected seats.

Children are a game changer.  77% of baseball fans would choose to sit in an area with netting if they were with children.  Regardless of demographic group, at least 69% report they would like to be protected from foul balls and bats if bringing a child to the ballpark.

This HBO Real Sports/Marist Poll has been conducted in conjunction with the Marist College Center for Sports Communication.

“Public awareness exists about fan safety at Major League baseball games, especially when it comes to children.  This should allow the League to cautiously put up additional safety netting,” says Keith Strudler, Director of the Marist College Center for Sports Communication, “The challenge for baseball is to institute safety measures without upsetting fans who would rather have an unobstructed view.”

Does watching a game through protective netting make the game less enjoyable?  66% report it does not change the way they feel about watching the game.  One in four, 25%, believes it makes it less enjoyable, and 8% report it makes it more enjoyable.  Men, 30%, are more likely than women, 20%, to think protective netting interferes with their enjoyment of the game.

Half of Americans, 50%, say they follow baseball, at least, a little.  81% of fans have been to a major league stadium.  19% have not.

Baseball, however, is not the game of choice for sports fans.  A majority of sports fans, 55%, say football is their favorite sport to watch or follow.  Baseball is a distant second with 17% followed by basketball with 14%.  Seven percent choose soccer, and 6% select hockey.

58% of Americans are sports fans, little changed from 57% in December.

Click Here for Complete April 19, 2016 USA HBO Real Sports/Marist Poll Release and Tables

Marist Poll Methodology

Nature of the Sample 

 

4/16: NY: Trump with 29 Point Lead over Kasich

In the contest for the Republican presidential nomination, businessman Donald Trump, 54%, leads Ohio Governor John Kasich, 25%, by 29 points among likely Republican primary voters in New York State.  Texas Senator Ted Cruz receives 16% of the likely GOP electorate.  Trump maintains a commanding lead over his Republican rivals.  In the previous NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of New York, Trump was ahead of Kasich by 33 points.

“Donald Trump is well-positioned to carry New York handily and is likely to acquire a sizeable number of New York’s delegates, as a result,” says Dr. Lee Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.

 

64% of likely Republican voters with a candidate preference strongly support their choice of candidate.  Seven in ten Trump supporters, 70%, say they will not waver in their commitment to him.

 Among likely Republican primary voters with a candidate preference, Kasich, 37%, is the most mentioned candidate as voters’ second choice.  Cruz follows with 30%, and Trump receives 14%.

 

Complete April 16, 2016 NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll Release of New York

 Complete April 16, 2016 NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of New York (Registered Voters)

 Complete April 16, 2016 NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of New York (Likely Republican Primary Voters)

Marist Poll Methodology for New York

Nature of the Sample for New York 

4/15: NY: Clinton with Strong Lead

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, 57%, runs ahead of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, 40%, by 17 points among New York likely Democratic primary voters in the contest for the Democratic presidential nomination.  In an NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of New York released earlier this week, Clinton was ahead of Sanders by 14 points.

“As the primary approaches, the back and forth between Clinton and Sanders hasn’t dramatically changed the New York contest for the Democrats in the last few days,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.

Clinton has maintained her advantage over Sanders by running up a large margin among Democratic primary voters 45 years of age or older.  Sanders retains his lead among first-time voters, those under the age of 45, and likely Democratic primary voters who describe themselves as very liberal.  Looking at region, Clinton is ahead of Sanders by 26 points in New York City and 24 points in the city’s suburbs.  Clinton and Sanders are competitive upstate, 49% to 50%, respectively.

72% of likely Democratic primary voters with a candidate preference, compared with 69% of those earlier this week, report they strongly support their choice of candidate.  Similar proportions of Clinton’s supporters, 71%, and Sanders’ backers, 72%, express a firm commitment to their choice of candidate.

Turning to the job performances of other prominent office holders in New York State, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s rating remains upside down.  41% of registered voters think Cuomo is doing either an excellent or good job in office.  This includes 7% who say he is doing an excellent job and 34% who think he is doing a good one.  55% of voters report Cuomo is doing either a fair, 34%, or poor, 21%, job.  Cuomo’s approval rating has inched up slightly from the 37% score he received in the Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist Poll last year.

Assessing Cuomo’s approval rating by party, a majority of Democrats, 54%, approve of how the governor is doing in office, up from 43% last spring.  The proportions of Republicans, 25%, and independents, 38%, who give Cuomo high marks are identical to what they were at that time.

Regionally, Cuomo is perceived best in New York City, 47%, and in the city’s suburbs, 45%.  Last time, Cuomo’s approval rating was 44% in the city and 41% in the suburbs.  34% of upstate voters, compared with 31% last May, share this opinion.

43% of voters statewide think the Empire State is moving in the right direction while 48% say it is moving in the wrong one.  This is little changed from last spring when 43% said the state was on track, and 51% thought it was off course.

Regionally, differences exist.  Half of New York City voters, 50%, have a positive opinion of the direction of the state.  43% of those in the suburbs and 38% of voters upstate agree.

The approval rating of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is at its lowest point since taking office.  35% of voters citywide approve of his job performance.  Included here are 8% of registered voters citywide who think the mayor is doing an excellent job and 27% who say he is doing a good one.  62% think he has done a fair or poor job.  In the November Wall Street Journal/NBC 4 New York/Marist Poll, 38% approved of de Blasio’s job performance, and 58% did not.  Currently, even a majority of Democrats rate him as fair or poor, 54%.

Mayor de Blasio’s approval rating is down among white voters.  27% of white voters approve of de Blasio’s job performance, down from 32% in the fall.  There is little change among Latinos and African Americans.  36% of Latinos, comparable to the 37% he received last time, approve of how de Blasio is doing his job.  Among African Americans, 49% give de Blasio high scores while 50% did so previously.

When it comes to the direction of New York City, voters’ opinions are upside down.  A majority of New York City voters, 51%, continue to think things in the Big Apple are moving in the wrong direction.  43% believe New York City is moving in the right one.  This is somewhat improved from last fall when 55% thought the city was on the wrong path, and 38% reported it was on the right course.

In contrast, President Barack Obama’s job approval rating among New York registered voters, 52%, is at its highest in three years.  Mr. Obama received an identical score of 52% this time three years ago.  When this question was last reported in May of 2015, 46% of registered voters gave Mr. Obama high scores, and 54% did not.

Complete April 15, 2016 NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll Release of New York

 Complete April 15, 2016 NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of New York (New York State Registered Voters)

 Complete April 15, 2016 NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of New York (New York City Registered Voters)

Complete April 15, 2016 NBC 4 New York/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll Tables of New York (Likely Democratic Primary Voters)

 Marist Poll Methodology for New York

 Nature of the Sample for New York 

4/13: MD: Trump Up 12 Points over Cruz… Clinton with Commanding Lead over Sanders

In Maryland, businessman Donald Trump has a 12 point lead over Texas Senator Ted Cruz among the likely Republican primary electorate.  On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has a wide 22 point lead over Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders among likely Democratic primary voters statewide.

Looking at the Republican contest, Trump receives 41% to 29% for Cruz and 24% for Ohio Governor John Kasich among likely Republican primary voters.

“If the front-runners maintain their leads, Trump and Clinton remain on the path to securing their respective party’s nomination,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “With two weeks to go to the Maryland primary, their rivals need to find a way to close the gap.”

Trump does best among likely Republican primary voters in Maryland who do not practice a religion, Tea Party supporters, earn less than $50,000 annually, or do not have a college degree.  Trump and Cruz tie among white evangelical Christians.  They are also competitive among those who practice a religion and women.  Also noteworthy, Kasich leads by double digits among likely Republican primary voters who describe themselves as moderate.

58% of likely Republican primary voters with a candidate preference strongly support their choice of candidate.  When compared with Cruz’s supporters, 51%, and Kasich’s backers, 44%, a larger proportion of Trump’s supporters, 71%, report they are firmly committed to their candidate selection.

Among likely Republican primary voters with a candidate preference, Kasich, 35%, and Cruz, 34%, are the most mentioned second choice.  Trump receives 17%.

On the Democratic side, Clinton, 58%, outpaces Sanders, 36%, by 22 points among likely Democratic primary voters. Clinton leads Sanders among most demographic groups, but she does especially well among likely Democratic primary voters who are women and 45 years of age or older or African Americans.  Sanders has a double-digit lead over Clinton among those who are under 45 years old.

69% of likely Democratic primary voters with a candidate preference are firmly committed to their choice of candidate.  72% of Clinton’s supporters, compared with 65% of Sanders’ backers, report they strongly support their candidate of choice.

Turning to this fall’s general election, Clinton and Sanders both have large leads over their potential Republican rivals.  They have their greatest advantage when matched against Trump.

In Maryland’s Republican primary for U.S. Senate, a majority of likely voters, 57%, are undecided. Kathy Szeliga, 20%, is ahead of Richard Douglas, 13%, and Chrys Kefalas, 9%, among likely Republican primary voters.  Only 28% of likely Republican primary voters with a candidate preference strongly support their choice of candidate.  36% somewhat support their selection, and 35% say they might vote differently.

In the Democratic contest for U.S. Senate, Chris Van Hollen, 44%, and Donna Edwards, 38%, are competitive among likely Democratic primary voters.  18% are undecided.  53% of likely Democratic primary voters with a candidate preference say they strongly support their choice of candidate.  Similar proportions of Edwards’ supporters, 55%, and Van Hollen’s backers, 53%, say they strongly support their candidate.

On the issues, more than two-thirds of Maryland residents, 67%, including 68% of registered voters, agree with the change in state law which decriminalizes the possession of small amounts of marijuana.  75% of Democrats, 70% of independents, and even 53% of Republicans agree with the change in the law.

There is less consensus when it comes to legalizing betting on fantasy sports websites such as Fan Duel and Draft Kings.  40% of residents, including the same proportion of registered voters, support such a proposal while 43% oppose it.  17% are undecided.  While pluralities of Republicans, 48%, and Democrats, 44%, are against legalizing such behavior, a plurality of independents, 46%, support it.

A majority of Maryland adults, 59%, including the same proportion of registered voters, think the laws governing the sale of guns should be stricter.  14% say they should be less strict, and 24% report they should be kept as they are.  While most Democrats, 82%, support strengthening the laws governing the sale of firearms, a plurality of Maryland’s GOP, just 36%, believes these laws should be kept as they are.  A plurality of independents, 46%, think the laws should be stricter.

Both Maryland Governor Larry Hogan and President Barack Obama are highly regarded among residents statewide.  More than two-thirds of Maryland adults, 67%, approve of Governor Hogan’s job performance.  15% disapprove.  Looking at the job performance of President Obama, 62% of residents statewide, including 88% of likely Democratic primary voters, approve of how the president is doing his job.  31% disapprove.

 Complete April 12, 2016 NBC4/Marist Poll Release of Maryland

 Complete April 12, 2016 NBC4/Marist Poll Tables of Maryland (Adults & Registered Voters)

 Complete April 12, 2016 NBC4/Marist Poll Tables of Maryland (Likely Republican Primary Voters)

Complete April 12, 2016 NBC4/Marist Poll Tables of Maryland (Likely Democratic Primary Voters)

Complete April 12, 2016 NBC4/Marist Poll Senate Tables of Maryland (Likely Republican Primary Voters, Likely Democratic Primary Voters & Potential Electorates )

Marist Poll Methodology for Maryland

Nature of the Sample for Maryland

 



 

4/12: New York: Trump Well-Positioned for Big Win… Clinton Dems’ Favorite

In the contest for the Republican presidential nomination in New York, businessman Donald Trump is favored by 54% of New York’s likely Republican primary voters.  If he can hold on to a majority of Republican support in the state, the April 19th contest could give him the lion’s share of New York’s delegates.  Ohio Governor John Kasich, 21%, lags behind in second followed by Texas Senator Ted Cruz with 18%.  Trump has a double-digit lead among key demographic groups.

“The road to the conventions goes through New York for both the Democrats and Republicans,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “Right now, the front-runners look like they will erase recent setbacks and add significantly to their delegate margins.  New York is not likely to enhance the hopes of those trying to close the gap in the delegate hunt.”

64% of likely Republican primary voters with a candidate preference or voted by absentee ballot strongly support their choice of candidate.  Among likely Republican primary voters who support Trump, 72% are firmly committed to him.

Looking at the second choice candidate of likely Republican primary voters with a candidate preference, Kasich, 36%, tops the list followed by Cruz, 32%, and Trump, 15%.

In the event that Trump goes to the Republican convention in Cleveland with the most delegates but does not have enough to win the nomination on the first ballot, a majority of likely Republican primary voters in New York, 64%, think Trump should still receive the nomination.  28% assert the GOP should nominate someone else.  If the Republican Party decides to nominate someone else, about six in ten likely Republican primary voters, 59%, say the nominee should be someone who ran in this year’s primary.  32% think it is acceptable to nominate someone who was not a candidate during the primaries.

On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, 55%, leads Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, 41%, among likely Democratic primary voters in New York including those who are undecided yet leaning toward a candidate or who voted by absentee ballot.  Three percent are undecided.

Clinton does best among likely Democratic primary voters in New York who are women and 45 years of age and older or who are African American.  Sanders does best among likely Democratic primary voters who have not participated in primaries in the past, those who are under 45 years old, or those who identify as very liberal. Clinton leads Sanders by 19 points in New York City and by 25 points in the suburbs which surround the city.  Clinton and Sanders are competitive upstate.

69% of likely Democratic primary voters with a candidate preference strongly support their choice of candidate.  More Clinton supporters, 73%, express a firm commitment to their preferred candidate than do backers of Sanders, 63%.

When it comes to party unity, Sanders’ backers are more hesitant than Clinton’s supporters to rally behind their candidate’s opponent if that opponent receives the Democratic nomination.  62% of Sanders’ backers say they will throw their support behind Clinton if she becomes the nominee.  This compares with 77% of Clinton’s supporters who say they will unify behind Sanders if he wins the party’s nod.

Turning to the general election, not surprisingly in this blue state where Democrats outnumber Republicans by two to one, the Democrats have the advantage over the Republicans among New York registered voters.  Both Sanders and Clinton lead their potential GOP rivals by double digits.

Among the Democratic and Republican fields, three candidates, Clinton, Sanders, and Trump, have connections to New York.  Who is the real New Yorker?  When New York residents are asked, 37% say Trump is the authentic New Yorker followed by Sanders, 27%, and Clinton, 26%.  When Democrats are asked to choose between Clinton and Sanders, 42% of the likely Democratic electorate chooses Clinton, and 39% select Sanders.

Looking at President Barack Obama’s approval rating in New York State, 62% of residents, including 87% of likely Democratic primary voters, approve of the job the president is doing in office.  33% of residents disapprove.

Complete April 12, 2016 NBC News/WSJ/Marist Poll Release of New York

Complete April 12, 2016 NBC News/WSJ/Marist Poll Tables of New York (Adults & Potential Electorates)

Complete April 12, 2016 NBC News/WSJ/Marist Poll Tables of New York (Registered Voters)

Complete April 12, 2016 NBC News/WSJ/Marist Poll Tables of New York (Likely Republican Primary Voters)

Complete April 12, 2016 NBC News/WSJ/Marist Poll Tables of New York (Likely Democratic Primary Voters)

Marist Poll Methodology for New York

Nature of the Sample for New York

 

4/8: Obama Approval Rating at 50%, but Dissatisfaction with D.C. Looms

Despite increasingly improved perceptions about President Barack Obama’s job performance, registered voters nationally continue to express displeasure with how Congress is doing its job.  In fact, the proportion of voters who disapprove of how the Republicans are performing is at its highest point in more than two years.  Congressional Democrats fare somewhat better, but still, just a little more than one in three members of the national electorate approves of their job performance.  To compound matters, there is growing pessimism about the direction of the nation.  In fact, the proportion of U.S. residents who think the nation is moving in the wrong direction is at its highest point in more than 4 years.

“With scores like this it’s not surprising that Washington is a target of ridicule on the 2016 campaign trail,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.

President Obama’s job approval rating has been inching upward since December of 2014 and currently stands at 50% among registered voters nationally.  46% disapprove of how he is doing his job.  When last reported in November, the electorate divided.  48% said they approved of the president’s job performance, and 48% did not.

Looking at the Republicans in Congress, 21% of registered voters approve of how they are doing their job.  73% disapprove.  While these ratings are little changed from the fall, the proportion of voters who disapprove of how the congressional GOP is doing its job is at its highest point in more than two years.  When it comes to the congressional Democrats, 36% approve of their job performance, but nearly six in ten, 59%, do not.  In November, those proportions were 38% and 55%, respectively.

68% of Americans think the nation is off course.  This is the largest proportion of residents who believe the country is moving in the wrong direction since November 2011.  At that time, 70% of Americans expressed dissatisfaction with the country’s trajectory.  When this question was last reported in the fall, 59% thought the country was moving in the wrong direction while 36% said it was moving in the right one.

Complete April 8, 2016 McClatchy-Marist Poll of the United States

Marist Poll Methodology

Nature of the Sample

 

4/8: McClatchy-Marist Poll

Do Americans think the nation is moving on the right or the wrong track?

Find out in the latest national McClatchy-Marist Poll.  To read the full McClatchy article, click here.

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