January 15th, 2008
08:53 PM ET
15 years ago

Exit Polling: Fiscal concerns dominate

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/POLITICS/01/15/mi.guide/art.assembly.line.gi.jpg caption=" The struggling auto industry has been a drag on Michigan's economy."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - In Michigan, voters deem one issue more important than all others combined: the economy.

According to just-released exit polling, a majority of Michigan Republican primary voters - 55 percent - said the economy is the most pressing issue facing the nation. That compares to 18 percent who said Iraq, 14 percent who named illegal immigration, and 10 percent who pointed to terrorism.

That's not surprising: the state's economy is powered by the domestic automotive industry, which has struggled for years. Michigan's unemployment rate, 7.4 percent, is much higher than the national average of 5 percent.

The economy has easily been the most discussed issue on the campaign trail in Michigan. Mitt Romney, a onetime successful businessman, has taken aim at John McCain for saying many of the state’s lost jobs aren't likely to return, and that workers need to be re-trained for far different positions in new industries.

“I want to bring Michigan back," Romney said Monday. "I'm not willing to sit back and say, 'Too bad for Michigan. Too bad for the car industry. Too bad for the people who've lost their jobs; they're gone forever.'"

Meanwhile, McCain said over the weekend he would "be ashamed to tell the people of Michigan or South Carolina that all of these jobs are coming back."

"I won the New Hampshire primary because I told people the truth: what they wanted to hear, what they didn't want to hear. These people know that a lot of these jobs aren't coming back," he said.

CNNMoney.com: Michigan's economic woes on the ballot

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Michigan
soundoff (89 Responses)
  1. Anonymous, Somewhere, MI

    Congratulations to Count Romnula's campaign. If this is really the best our party can do maybe the Dems just deserve to win this one.

    January 15, 2008 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  2. lee houston, TX.

    With 11 % of the votes in, Mitt projected the winner in Michigan

    January 15, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  3. Roger

    Thank God fiscal issues dominated this race! Nobody defends American jobs like Hillary "NAFTA Superhighway" Clinton, and Mitt "I didn't know they were illegal – honest!" Romney.

    January 15, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  4. Richard

    Republicans are the reason the economy is doing terrible. The job outsourcing to china has got to stop. where will our college grads work? wal mart? starbucks?

    If you want the economy to get better dont vote republican!

    ps i used to vote republican.. NEVER AGAIN!

    January 15, 2008 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  5. Gary Indiana

    I worked as a General Motors dealership mechanic for over 20 years and I can assure you all that the quality problems that I encountered ( which were very numurous) had nothing to do with the assembly proceess or labor. low quality parts were knowingly used in the manufacturing process to increase profit margins. Poor designs and new designs that had bugs still to work out were used extensively. Many designs used by General motors( like distributorless ignition ) were used 10 years earlier than Honda installed them on their cars. Of course General motorss had several problems with early distributorless ignition systems.
    Sure alot of the union labor in auto manufacturing are alittle overpaid but they cant be blamed for engineering and management decisions. The overpayment of these workers and other union workers had a positive effect by lifting wages and setting higher standards for other working class jobs. An example is when the U.S. had an abundance of union jobs the pay scale of non union jobs was higher to keep employees from fleeing to union shops. kind of reminds me of trikle down economics. hah hah hah ........ anyone believe in trikle down economics now?

    January 15, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  6. therealist

    Dear Richard, If you want the economy to get better then please stop buying foreign made products.

    January 15, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  7. David

    Take Veronica off the list. She is what is wrong today. Rips apart a mother who has made family first – and suggests that a "job" makes a woman. Veronica's lost common sense. Of course raising a family is a top priority. If this is to be debated that we are truly sick. Her assumption is that the Romney children are failures. Based on what? Let's take fact and not opinion.

    Romney is a politician – but a reality is he has turned companies around, the Olympics around, a state around. He is one of the best turn-around leaders there is. Our government needs a turn-around. Over course he can turn the automative industry around. It is time to use innovation to correct our auto industry. It needs a major overhaul.

    My criticism of Romney is flip-floppying on abortion. Mitt, stick to your guns.

    January 15, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  8. J.W. Burchell, Flint, Mi

    I believe that all candidates will come in and tell the people what they want to hear to get their votes. watch what they pitch in the coming states respective days to vote. I think its a shame that the R.N.C AND THE D.N.C can come into Michigan and esentially tell our voters that their vote doesnt matter because they are above the establishment and voters wants and needs. They take away our delegates because we dont play by their rules. We definately need a third party. It is a slap in the face of the Michigan voters to do that to us, we have 17 electoral votes and you better believe when it comes to that they will care, but care only for our electoral votes not our wishes wants and needs that drive us to vote as we do.

    January 15, 2008 09:40 pm at 9:40 pm |
  9. aj huntington ny

    Do you want more money in your pocket? A conservative President will not increase your income taxes– whether you make $40,000 or $400,000, your withholding will not suffer. If you have less taken out of your check, you end up with more money in your pocket. Yes, Republicans will also take less taxes from big businesses, but them those big businesses can develop products of tomorrow, invest here in the USA and provide jobs. Raising taxes never helps the economy.

    January 15, 2008 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  10. kit

    Doesn't matter... from what I can tell of Michigan's polls... They look as rigged as New Hampshire. Everyone goes up not exactly but pretty dang close to the same amount of votes each percent which is unlikely. And I have a hard time believing the Rudy being the front runner before has dropped so low.

    January 15, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  11. kit

    And for some reason the percentages have stayed the same every time the percents reporting have increased. That is impossible.

    January 15, 2008 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  12. Richard

    whats more money in yor pocket without a job that has been sent to china??

    January 15, 2008 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  13. Jamie Lotze

    I agree with an earlier poster "Darrin" from Brockport, NY.

    Americans need to do their research on each candidate, don't let the media determine your decision for you. Voters should not only listen to the debates, but also go back and look at each candidate’s record through out his or her service to America.

    Another problem I take issue to is cable news networks inviting the Presidential candidates they want to a debate. This is not fair to the American voter.

    Please let us determine on our own who will be the next President to run this great country!

    And no matter who our next President is....American people need to speak up and be heard!! Tell your local government what you’re not happy with.

    After all they work for us….

    January 15, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  14. Jim, S.C

    The uncommitted would be both Obama and Edwards togather, looks like a landslide for Senator Clinton. Not her fault Michigan messed up there Delagate Count. Both Edwards and Obama are on the Florida Ballet, knowing it too was suspended like Michigan. Senator Clinton is the best candidate for President. A Clinton / Obama ticket would be unbeatable. My gut feeling tells me that Clinton can win without Obama, but I do not feel Obama can win without Clinton. This team would be so GREAT for America.

    "Senator Clinton for President of the United States 2008″

    January 15, 2008 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
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