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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

New D-Corps Survey: Public Looking for Investment and Balanced Approach in Face of Sequester

As the country approaches the next self-imposed crisis deadline of the prolonged budget battle, politicians in Washington and state capitals across the country would do well to take note: swing voters have no appetite for the severe cuts that will result from the sequester, and they have little patience for the crisis-to-crisis approach to fiscal governance that has defined the last two years. And now, as they are poised to experience painful austerity measures induced by Washington, these voters give clear signals about what the policy priorities should be moving forward. They are also very clear about who should be the priority in any budget deal–the middle class, seniors, and working families, rather than the wealthiest and elites with access to the halls of power.
Many voters are on the edge financially and face immense economic pressure on a daily basis and they can ill-afford to experience these cuts of essential support. And as the country hurtles toward sequestration, all voters, certainly Democrats and independents, prioritize a balanced approach that does not put the burden on the backs of the most vulnerable, and instead invests in education, research, and infrastructure in a long-term and meaningful way.
To find out how these voters are thinking about the big fiscal choices ahead and the President’s second term policy agenda, Greenberg Quinlan Rosner, along with Democracy Corps, the Roosevelt Institute, and Women’s Voices. Women Vote Action Fund, conducted dial meter and follow-up focus groups with 44 swing voters (including 11 unmarried women) in Denver, Colorado during the 2013 State of the Union address. These voters in Denver watched closely and responded positively to President Obama’s speech. The President’s supporters cheered his bolder approach and stronger tone. Even those who began the night more skeptical of the President left the speech hopeful that he will take action on some of his key policy proposals.
Research was conducted on February 12, 2013 by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research for Democracy Corps, Women’s Voices. Women Vote Action Fund and the Economic Media Project. Participants were 44 swing voters from the Denver, Colorado metro area who split their votes evenly between Democratic and Republican candidates over the past several Presidential and Congressional elections. 25 women and 19 men split their 2012 votes for President based on Colorado statewide results, and split the 2010 votes evenly between U.S. Senate candidates (Bennett/Buck).
Dial testing focus group research was conducted using the Perception Analyzer powered by Dialsmith. Perception Analyzer measures participant opinions in a real-time, second-by-second methodology that provides instant and precise measurements of quantitative research within a qualitative audience. Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research measured and examined several participant subsets including political identification, candidate preference and many demographic variables to aid analysis.

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