POLL MEASURES PUBLIC VIEW OF CANDIDATES' ECONOMIC POLICIES
PERCEPTIONS _ NOT NECESSARILY KNOWLEDGE _ OF WHERE BUSH AND DUKAKIS STAND WILL DETERMINE HOW PEOPLE VOTEHave voters figured out where Vice President George Bush and Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis stand on the economic, financial and business issues that will affect their lives during the coming four (or perhaps eight) years?
Maybe, maybe not. But equally important - perhaps more important - than what the two presidential hopefuls will actually do when one or the other takes up residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. next January, is what people believe their respective economic policies will be.That's what Wall Street guru Louis Rukeyser - his syndicated column appears each Sunday in the Deseret News Money section - set out to establish Monday night on a Public Broadcasting Service special (locally on Channel 7) titled "Louis Rukeyser's 1988 Election Guide."
During the show, a new poll by the Roper Organization was released detailing what Americans currently perceive to be the two candidates' plans for the nation's economic future. The poll also showed that Dukakis has regained momentum and now leads Bush 48 percent to 40 percent with 12 percent undecided.
The questions were posed Sept. 8, 9, and 10 and were asked of 1,003 adults. Here are the results on the financial issues:
- 41 percent said if Bush is elected president their taxes will be higher; 3 percent think they will be lower; 45 percent think they'll be about the same; 12 percent didn't know.
- 52 percent think if Dukakis is elected their taxes will be higher; 6 percent think they will be lower; 31 percent think they'll be about the same; 11 percent weren't sure.
- 27 percent thought the most important economic issue was providing for the needy; 20 percent thought it was reducing government spending; 19 percent thought it was keeping inflation low; 15 percent thought it was holding down unemployment; and 15 percent thought it was holding down taxes.
- 40 percent polled believed they were better off than they had been four years ago; 42 percent thought they were about the same; 16 percent said they were worse off; and 2 percent weren't sure.
- Looking ahead to the next four years, 57 percent expected they would be better off; 29 percent thought they would be about the same; 6 percent believed they would be worse off; and 8 percent weren't sure.
- 55 percent thought U.S. federal taxes were too high; 37 percent thought they were about right; 3 percent thought they were too low; and 5 percent weren't sure.
- 36 percent thought Dukakis would do a better job at dealing with unemployment; 25 percent believed Bush would do a better job; 29 percent said it wouldn't make a difference; and 10 percent were undecided.
- 34 percent thought Bush would do a better job at dealing with inflation; 29 percent thought Dukakis would do a better job; 24 percent believed it wouldn't make much difference; and 13 percent didn't know.
- On the budget deficit, 35 percent thought Dukakis would do better attacking the problems; 25 percent believed Bush would do better; 26 percent thought it wouldn't make much difference; and 14 percent were not sure.
- 29 percent said Bush would do better dealing with the trade deficit; 27 percent said Dukakis would deal with it better;25 percent thought it wouldn't make much difference; and 20 percent didn't know.
- 12 percent said the next president should spend more on defense; 35 percent said he should spend less; 48 percent believed he should keep spending about the same amount; and 5 percent were undecided.