The St. Petersburg Times and Bay News 9 teamed up with the Miami Herald for a telephone survey of 800 registered voters, which was conducted Sept. 14-17 by SEA Polling and Strategic Design, whose clients are primarily Democrats, and the Polling Co., which works mainly with Republicans. The margin of error is 3.5 percent.
1. As things stand now, how likely are you to vote in the general election for President of the United States — are you almost certain to vote, will you probably vote, are the chances fifty-fifty that you will vote, or are you not that likely to vote?
|Almost certain to vote||96|
2. Thinking about the Presidential campaigns, how closely are you following news about the candidates currently running for president – would you say that you're following it very closely, somewhat closely, not too closely or not closely at all?
|Not too closely||5|
|Not closely at all||1|
3. Generally speaking, do you feel that things in the United State are headed in the right direction these days, or do you feel that things are headed in the wrong direction?
4. Generally speaking, do you feel that things here in Florida are headed in the right direction these days, or do you feel that things are headed in the wrong direction?
5. How would you rate the way George W. Bush is handling his job as president — excellent, good, fair, or poor?
6. How would you rate the way Charlie Crist is handling his job as Governor of Florida — excellent, good, fair, or poor?
7. What is the first thing that springs to mind when I say the name "Sarah Palin"? Please tell me the first thing you think of or associate with Sarah Palin. And what is the second thing you think of?
|Never heard of||1||*|
8. What is the first thing that springs to mind when I say the name "Joe Biden"? Please tell me the first thing you think of or associate with Joe Biden. And what is the second thing you think of?
|Never heard of||1||1|
9. What do you think should be the most important issue for the next president and Congress to deal with right away?
|Strengthening the economy||43|
|Managing the war in Iraq||14|
|Protecting us from terrorism||12|
|Stabilizing our mortgage and financial institutions||4|
|Lowering energy prices||4|
|Increasing access to quality health care||4|
|Controlling illegal immigration||3|
|Managing Social Security and Medicare||3|
|Lowering our taxes||3|
|Improving our public schools||2|
|Reducing greenhouse gases that cause global warming||1|
10. If the election for President were today and the candidates were John McCain and Sarah Palin, the Republican Party ticket, Barack Obama and Joe Biden, the Democratic Party ticket, which one do you think you would vote for?
11. How certain are you about your level of support for: Would you say that you are very certain, somewhat certain, or might you still change your mind about voting for?
|Might still change mind||3|
|Might still change mind.||2|
12. Does John McCain's selection of Sarah Palin as his vice-presidential running mate make you more likely or less likely to vote for John McCain for president?
13. Does Barack Obama's selection of Joe Biden as his vice-presidential running mate make you more likely or less likely to vote for Barack Obama for president?
(REGISTERED DEMOCRATS ONLY)
14. In the Democratic primary for President, did you support Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, or Barack Obama - if you voted for another candidate please just say so?
I am now going to read you a short list of challenges for the next President. For each one, please tell me which major party candidate you trust most in this area – John McCain or Barac k Obama.
|Issue||McCain||Obama||Both equal||Neither||Don't know|
|Be an effective commander-in-chief||55||38||2||3||1|
|Improve the economy||40||49||2||5||3|
|Manage the wars in Iran and Afghanistan||54||40||—||2||4|
|Make health care more affordable||29||56||3||6||5|
|Change the way Washington works||35||48||2||10||4|
|Make America more competitive||41||46||2||5||6|
|Lower energy prices||40||44||2||9||5|
|Appointing new Supreme Court justices||43||44||3||3||7|
23. Over the past two years, would you say your personal economic situation has gotten better, gotten worse, or stayed about the same?
|Stayed about the same||43|
24. Over the next year, do you expect your personal economic situation to get better, worse, or stay about the same?
|Stayed about the same||46|
25. Do you support or oppose allowing oil drilling closer than 125-miles from the Florida coast?
26. There have been numerous proposals for how to lower energy prices and reduce our dependency on foreign oil. I will now read a list of those proposals. After I have finished please tell me which solution you believe would have the most positive effect?
|Investing more in bio-fuel research||12||13|
|Removing restrictions on off-shore drilling||20||13|
|Providing tax incentives to promote conservation||4||7|
|Building more nuclear power plants||15||16|
|Promoting the increased use of wind and solar power||28||19|
|Increasing fuel mileage standards on cars and trucks||7||11|
|Suspending the federal gas tax during peak months||2||5|
|Rebating windfall taxes on oil companies to taxpayers||6||7|
27. Looking back, do you feel America is safer today than it was on Sept 10, 2001?
28. Looking back, did the United States make the right decision to invade Iraq?
29. In addition to the election for President and other offices, there will also be a series of amendments to the Florida constitution. Amendment 2 amends the state constitution to define marriage as "the legal union of only one man and one woman as husband and wife, no other legal union that is treated as marriage or the substantial equivalent thereof shall be valid or recognized." If the election were held today, would you vote "Yes" to approve the amendment or "No" to reject the amendment?