Public Opinion on Tea Party and OWS

By Harris Interactive, Special for US Daily Review.

Almost three years ago the Tea Party movement was born and, at the moment, one-third of Americans (34%) support the movement while two in five oppose it (41%) and one-quarter (25%) are not at all sure. Almost three months ago, another movement, Occupy Wall Street (OWS), began. Currently, two in five U.S. adults (39%) say they support the OWS protests, one-quarter (27%) oppose them, and three in ten (29%) are not familiar with the protests.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20100517/NY06256LOGO )

These are some of the results of The Harris Poll of 2,499 adults surveyed online between November 7 and 14, 2011 by Harris Interactive .

Who are Tea Party supporters?

As one might expect, Republicans are more likely than Democrats to be Tea Party supporters (71% vs. 6%) and the same holds true for Conservatives over Liberals (68% vs. 7%). But Moderates and Independents are not that similar as just one quarter of Moderates (24%) support the Tea Party while two in five Independents do (39%).

Looking at generations, half (50%) of Matures (those 66 and older) are Tea Party supporters compared to 36% of Baby Boomers (those 47-65), 30% of Gen Xers (those 35-46) and one-quarter (27%) of Echo Boomers (those 18-34). There are also educational differences. Two-thirds of those with a post graduate degree (65%) and half of those with a college degree (51%) oppose the Tea Party compared to 42% of those with some college and 30% of those with a high school education or less.

Who are Occupy Wall Street supporters?

When it comes to the Occupy Wall Street movement, two-thirds of Liberals (67%) and almost three in five Democrats (58%) support it, as do one in five Republicans (19%) and 16% of Conservatives. With the OWS protests, Independents (43%) and Moderates (44%) are more closely aligned than they are when looking at Tea Party support.

While Matures are most likely among the generations to support the Tea Party, they are least likely (33%) to support the OWS movement. Baby Boomers are most likely (43%) to support these protests followed by Echo Boomers (41%). Education also plays a role in support of this movement. Only one-third of those with a high school education or less (32%) support OWS, just 23% oppose it and two in five (40%) are not familiar with the movement. Among post-graduates, three in five (58%) support OWS and 30% oppose it.

So What?

It is very likely that both of these groups will continue to play a role during the upcoming election year and it will be interesting to see how candidates of both parties deal with these movements and the feelings associated with them. Obviously, Democratic candidates will favor OWS while Republican candidates will lean more towards the Tea Party. But, what about those candidates trying to win over the middle? If you look at the likely swing states for 2012 (Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia) 38% of those people support the Tea Party and 39% oppose it, while 36% of people in these states support the OWS movement and 31% oppose it. This may make for hard choices by both President Obama and the eventual Republican nominee.

TABLE 1

SUPPORT OF TEA PARTY

“Do you support or oppose the Tea Party Movement?”

Base: All adults

Total Party ID Party Philosophy Swing States
Rep. Dem. Ind. Cons. Mod. Lib. 2012 2008
% % % % % % % % %
SUPPORT (NET) 34 71 6 39 68 24 7 38 38
   Strongly support 12 28 1 11 28 5 * 13 13
   Somewhat support 23 44 5 28 40 18 6 25 25
OPPOSE (NET) 41 12 73 39 12 47 73 39 38
   Somewhat oppose 13 8 15 17 5 18 11 10 10
   Strongly oppose 28 3 57 22 6 29 62 28 28
Not at all sure 25 17 21 22 21 29 21 23 24
Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding; 2012 Swing States are Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia; 5% states in 2008 are Florida, Indiana, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina and Ohio

TABLE 1A

SUPPORT OF TEA PARTY

“Do you support or oppose the Tea Party Movement?”

Base: All adults

Total Generation Education
Echo

Boomers

(18-34)

Gen X

(35-46)

Baby

Boomers

(47-65)

Matures

(66+)

HS or

Less

Some college College

grad

Post grad
% % % % % % % % %
SUPPORT (NET) 34 27 30 36 50 37 34 35 27
   Strongly support 12 5 10 14 20 13 10 11 9
   Somewhat support 23 22 21 22 31 23 24 24 18
OPPOSE (NET) 41 40 38 45 37 30 42 51 65
   Somewhat oppose 13 13 13 13 13 12 12 14 17
   Strongly oppose 28 28 25 32 24 18 30 37 48
Not at all sure 25 33 32 19 12 33 25 14 8
Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

TABLE 2

FAMILIAR WITH OCCUPY WALL STREET

“How familiar are you, if at all, with the current civil protest, sometimes called Occupy Wall Street?”

Base: All adults

Total Political Party
Rep. Dem. Ind.
% % % %
FAMILIAR (NET) 71 74 73 78
   Very familiar 21 23 23 23
   Somewhat familiar 50 51 50 55
NOT FAMILIAR (NET) 29 26 27 22
   Not that familiar 18 16 18 16
   Not at all familiar 11 9 9 6
Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

TABLE 3

SUPPORT OF OCCUPY WALL STREET

“How strongly do you support or oppose the Occupy Wall Street protests?”

Base: All adults

Total Party ID Party Philosophy Swing States
Rep. Dem. Ind. Cons. Mod. Lib. 2012 2008
% % % % % % % % %
SUPPORT (NET) 39 19 58 43 16 44 67 36 36
   Strongly support 15 3 25 14 4 12 38 11 12
   Somewhat support 25 16 32 29 12 31 29 25 24
OPPOSE (NET) 27 51 10 30 49 21 6 31 31
   Somewhat oppose 11 20 5 12 15 12 4 12 14
   Strongly oppose 16 31 5 18 34 10 2 19 17
Not at all sure 5 4 5 5 6 6 2 3 4
Not familiar 29 26 27 22 30 29 25 29 29
Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding; 2012 Swing States are Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia; 5% states in 2008 are Florida, Indiana, Missouri, Montana, North Carolina and Ohio

TABLE 3A

SUPPORT OF OCCUPY WALL STREET

“How strongly do you support or oppose the Occupy Wall Street protests?”

Base: All adults

Total Generation Education
Echo

Boomers

(18-34)

Gen X

(35-46)

Baby

Boomers

(47-65)

Matures

(66+)

HS or

Less

Some

college

College

grad

Post grad
% % % % % % % % %
SUPPORT (NET) 39 41 36 43 33 32 40 45 58
   Strongly support 15 12 13 20 8 12 14 16 26
   Somewhat support 25 29 23 23 25 21 25 29 32
OPPOSE (NET) 27 20 24 28 41 23 27 34 30
   Somewhat oppose 11 9 13 10 14 8 12 16 13
   Strongly oppose 16 11 11 18 27 14 16 18 17
Not at all sure 5 4 6 5 6 5 5 5 3
Not familiar 29 35 34 24 20 40 28 15 9
Note: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding

According to a company statement: “This Harris Poll was conducted online within the United States between November 7 and 14, 2011 among 2,499 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words “margin of error” as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal. Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.”

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.

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