State and National Public Survey, March 1996

March 10-14, 1996
N=311 Registered Voters
Margin of Error: +/- 6 %

If the election for U.S. Senate were held today and the candidates were Republican Nancy Mayer and Democrat Jack Reed, would you vote for: 30% Mayer, 46% Reed, 24% don't know or no answer

Would you say that over the past year, Rhode Island's economy has gotten better, stayed about the same, or gotten worse? 11% gotten better, 39% stayed about the same, 47% gotten worse, 3% don't know or no answer

What about the next 12 months or so? Do you expect the Rhode Island economy to get better, stay about the same, or get worse? 20% get better, 46% stay the same, 29% get worse, 5% don't know or no answer

We are interested in how people are getting along financially these days. Would you say that you (and your family living there) are: 35% better off, 35% worse off financially than you were a year ago, 30% don't know or no answer

Now looking ahead--do you think that a year from now you (and your family living there) will be: 33% better off financially, 11% worse off, 49% just about the same as now, 7% don't know or no answer

Now turning to business conditions in the state as a whole--do you think that during the next twelve months we'll have: 34% good times financially, 47% bad times, 19% don't know or no answer

Looking ahead, which would you say is more likely--that in the state as a whole: 23% we'll have continuous good times during the next five years or so, 59% that we will have periods of widespread unemployment or depression, or what, 18% don't know or no answer

About the big things people buy for their homes--such as furniture, a refrigerator, stove, television, and things like that. Generally speaking, do you think now is a: 52% good, 23% bad time for people to buy major household items, 25% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job Bill Clinton is doing as president? 8% excellent, 46% good, 33% only fair, 12% poor, 1% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job Claiborne Pell is doing as U.S. Senator? 15% excellent, 42% good, 26% only fair, 7% poor, 10% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job John Chafee is doing as U.S. Senator? 8% excellent, 45% good, 29% only fair, 7% poor, 11% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job Patrick Kennedy is doing as U.S. Representative? 9% excellent, 35% good, 20% only fair, 14% poor, 22% don't know or no answer (first district only)

How would you rate the job Jack Reed is doing as U.S. Representative? 14% excellent, 40% good, 26% only fair, 5% poor, 15% don't know or no answer (second district only)

How would you rate the job Lincoln Almond is doing as governor? 5% excellent, 32% good, 30% only fair, 24% poor, 9% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job Robert Weygand is doing as lieutenant governor? 4% excellent, 22% good, 22% only fair, 4% poor, 48% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job Jeff Pine is doing as attorney general? 19% excellent, 43% good, 18% only fair, 4% poor, 16% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job Jim Langevin is doing as secretary of state? 3% excellent, 27% good, 20% only fair, 1% poor, 49% don't know or no answer

How would you rate the job Nancy Mayer is doing as general treasurer? 15% excellent, 39% good, 17% only fair, 6% poor, 23% don't know or no answer

Generally speaking, would you say things in Rhode Island are going in the right direction, or have they gotten off on the wrong track? 37% right direction, 55% wrong track, 8% don't know or no answer

As far as you are concerned, what is the most important problem facing the state of Rhode Island today? open-ended responses coded as 33% jobs and unemployment, 18% the economy, 7% the budget, 6% taxes, 5% politicians and government performance, 4% ethics and corruption, 4% education, 4% the business climate, 2% the environment, 2% roads and potholes, 2% crime, 2% welfare

Do you support legislation that would deregulate the power-generating component of the electric power industry in Rhode Island? 41% support, 27% oppose, 32% don't know or no answer

As part of this move into a more competitive market, would you be willing to compensate major electric power companies in Rhode Island for their past investments in power generating plants? 23% yes, 52% no, 25% don't know or no answer

How much would you be willing to compensate them for over the next 25 years? 52% None, 5% $100 million, 2% $250 million, 2% $500 million, 0% $750 million, 0% $1 billion, 39% don't know or no answer

Do you support legislation requiring a 24 hour waiting period between the scheduling of an abortion and the actual procedure, during which the pregnant woman would be required to undergo counseling on abortion alternatives? 52% support, 34% oppose, 14% don't know or no answer

Do you support legislation that would allow Medicaid recipients to pay for an abortion with their subsidized benefits? 37% support, 45% oppose, 18% don't know or no answer

Do you believe that those on public assistance should be required to get a job or do community work in order to receive cash benefits? 88% yes, 9% no, 3% don't know or no answer

Do you support a lifetime five-year limit on the time people can collect public assistance? 65% support, 26% oppose, 9% don't know or no answer

Should the cash benefit to a family of three on public assistance be lowered from $6,648 to $5,651 a year? 16% support, 68% oppose, 16% don't know or no answer

Regardless of how you vote, do you usually think of yourself as a Republican, a Democrat, an Independent, or something else? 11% Republican, 29% Democrat, 49% Independent, 6% Other, 5% don't know or no answer

Darrell M. West, Thomas J. Anton, and Jack Combs