April 1st, 2010
04:45 PM ET
5 years ago

CNN Poll: Democrats lose edge on economy

When Americans are asked which party would do a better job with the economy, poll results show Republicans now hold an advantage over Democrats.
When Americans are asked which party would do a better job with the economy, poll results show Republicans now hold an advantage over Democrats.

Washington (CNN) - Democrats have lost their large advantage over Republicans when Americans are asked which party would do a better job with the economy, according to a new national poll.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Thursday indicates that 48 percent of Americans say Republicans in Congress would do a better job dealing with the economy, with 45 percent saying that congressional Democrats would better handle the issue. That's a switch from last August, when Democrats held a 52 percent to 39 percent advantage on the economy.

Full results (pdf)

According to the poll, Democrats have some ground on health care, but not as much as on the economy. In August, 51 percent thought that Democrats would do a better job with health care reform than the GOP. That's now down to 48 percent, but it's still slightly higher than the 46 percent who say Republicans would do a better job on the issue.

"Democratic losses on the economy are roughly twice as big as their losses on health care," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "That's evidence that the economy - not health care - is the chief reason for the Republicans' current advantage over the Democrats in the midterm congressional races."

A CNN survey released Tuesday indicated that the GOP held a four point edge over Democrats in voters' choice for Congress, a switch from last fall, when Democrats held a six-point advantage.

Democrats currently hold a 253 to 177 advantage in the House of Representatives, with four seats the Democrats once held vacant and one seat that the GOP held vacant. Republicans need to win 40 seats to take back control of the chamber.

While the battle over health care reform has dominated headlines lately, the economy is still issue number one with voters, and nearly eight in ten people questioned in the survey say the economic conditions in the country today are somewhat or very poor. That's down five points from February but still nearly quadruple the number of people who say the economy's in very good or somewhat good shape.

"Dissatisfaction with the economy is roughly 20 points higher than any opposition to the new health care bill," adds Holland.

The survey indicates that only terrorism is a better issue than the economy for Republicans. While the GOP has a ten-point edge on terrorism, Democrats score slightly better on foreign policy and Afghanistan. According to the poll, the Democrats' best issues are education and the environment.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted March 25-28, with 1,009 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.


Filed under: CNN poll • Democrats • Economy • GOP
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. barbarian_horde

    When you have Fox News aggressively telling American every day, every hour, that things are a mess, that President Obama is a socialist, that everything is bad, that is a heckuva headwind for the economy to buck. President Obama has cut taxes for average Americans, yet the Tea Party, flogged by Fox News, convinces everyone they can that your taxes are higher. Why do we have a foreign-owned news channel controlling the thoughts of so many Americans, and making them so mad? It's crazy. How many people in that poll know the economy grew 5.6% last quarter?

    April 1, 2010 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  2. Rick

    The Republicans started this mess.How stupid are the american people? By the polls very stupid.

    April 1, 2010 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  3. liz the First

    Who are all these stupid people who are answering these polls???? the rethuglicans got us into this financial mess in the first place and are bound and determined to keep us there! their goal is to do away with the middle class and go back to the days of the robber barons and the poor with nothing in between. do the people who favored the republican'ts in this poll realize that the deficit has grown substantially more under republican administrations than under democrats? have they forgotten bush inherited a tremendous budget surplus and within a year had turned it into a huge deficit??? wake up, people! democrats are the true fiscal conservatives, the rethugliban are merely penny wise and pound foolish.

    April 1, 2010 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  4. Mark

    Obama has ruined it for the democxrats. Now, the republicans will gain control again. THANKS A LOT, OBAMA!

    April 1, 2010 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
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