Michigan exit poll: Economy, jobs still top issues - WNEM TV 5

Michigan exit poll: Economy, jobs still top issues

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By The Associated Press

DETROIT (AP) -- Voters' views of Tuesday's elections, according to a preliminary exit poll conducted in Michigan for The Associated Press:



Michigan voters remain concerned about the economy, with nearly three in five identifying it as the top issue. Far behind are health care and the federal budget deficit, with foreign policy bringing up the rear. Only about one-fourth of the voters said the economy is in excellent or good shape, while seven in 10 labeled it not so good or poor. Still, there were signs of optimism. About four in 10 said the nation's economy is getting better, while about one-fourth said it is getting worse, and about as many felt it's staying about the same. Roughly three in 10 said their family's financial situation has improved compared to four years ago, while about the same number said it has gotten worse. About one-third said it hasn't changed.



Unemployment is a nagging worry. About four in 10 voters picked it as the biggest economic problem facing people like themselves. But a similar number chose rising prices, while taxes and the housing market were of less concern. Nearly four in 10 said someone in their household has lost a job or been laid off in the last four years.



Opinions vary about what personal quality matters most in selecting a president. About three in 10 said it's most important that the candidate have a vision for the future or share the voter's values. About two in 10 said it was most important that the candidate "cares about people like me" or is a strong leader.



A majority of Michigan voters believe abortion should remain legal, a position favored by nearly three in five. A smaller number -- about three in 10 -- said it should be legal in all cases, while about one-fourth said it should be legal most of the time. About two in five said it should be illegal in most or all cases.



The president's health care initiative remains sharply divisive. About as many voters said it should be kept or expanded as those who believed it should be partly or completely scrapped. Broken down further, about three in 10 favored expanding the program, while nearly two in 10 said it should stay as it is. Roughly one-fourth favored repealing it entirely while two in 10 would repeal some of it.



More than two in five voters favored raising income tax rates for people with incomes over $250,000, while just over one in 10 said everyone should pay more. More than one-third said no one should get a tax increase.


The survey of 2,446 Michigan voters was conducted for AP and the television networks by Edison Research. This includes preliminary results from interviews conducted as voters left a random sample of 45 precincts statewide Tuesday, as well as 502 who voted early or absentee and were interviewed by landline or cellular telephone from Oct. 28 through Nov. 2. Results for the full sample were subject to sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points; it is higher for subgroups.

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