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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

TDS Co-Editor Ruy Teixeira: Public Backs Financial Reform

In his latest ‘Public Opinion Snapshot,’ TDS Co-Editor Ruy Teixeira cites new data indicating that “the public is strongly supportive of moving forward” on financial system reform, and “they are likely to view those who try to delay or derail action quite unfavorably.” As Teixeira explains:

Consider these results from an early March survey conducted by Pew’s Financial Reform Project. The poll asked how important it is to take action now to reform big Wall Street banks. The public was overwhelmingly convinced (79 percent) that it was very (47 percent) or somewhat (32 percent) important to take action, compared to just 18 percent who thought it was not too (9 percent) or not at all (10 percent) important.

As for the Democratic plans for financial reform now being considered by congress, Teixeira notes that, when provided “a short description” of the plan, respondents favored it “by a lopsided 69-25 margin.” Even better, adds Teixeira,

The public also said that if their member of Congress voted for the financial reform plan, they’d be far more likely (50 percent) to be more favorable toward their representative than less favorable (18 percent).

As Teixeira concludes, “These data should encourage those in Congress seeking to move forward swiftly on sending a financial reform bill to the president’s desk.” As the screaming about HCR gradually subsides, it appears that Dems are on very solid ground regarding one of the public’s critical priorities — financial reform. Should be fun to watch Republicans squirming their way through this one.

One comment on “TDS Co-Editor Ruy Teixeira: Public Backs Financial Reform

  1. Paul Booth on

    The appearance that Democrats “are on very solid ground” may be wishful thinking. The Pew survey Ruy cites doesn’t probe the partisan dimension. If the voters don’t know what the Democrats are doing, no matter how closely they cleave to the voters’ preferences on the issue, the voters are still likely to retain their “first impression” of the Democrats on the issue. And that impression was formed by the TARP vote, and it’s a lasting impression.
    Conclusion: whether this issue will cause the GOP any heartburn is a function of events in the future: whether the Senate battle will be visible and polarized, and whether Democrats will scorch Republicans for the votes and their other ties to and protective actions on behalf of the despised bankers.


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