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38% Favor Obama Jobs Plan, 36% Oppose

Monday, September 12, 2011

Voters think Congress may pass at least some of President Obama’s latest jobs plan but have much more confidence in reducing government regulations to create new jobs.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 38% of Likely U.S. Voters favor the $447 billion plan the president introduced to a joint session of Congress last Thursday evening. Nearly as many (36%) oppose the plan which includes the continuation of certain tax breaks, the passage of several stalled free trade agreements with other countries and new spending for education, infrastructure like roads and bridges and the further extension of unemployment benefits. Twenty-six percent (26%) are undecided about the plan. (To see survey question wording, click here.

A look at the partisan demographics suggests, however, that many voters still don’t know much about the plan and are just reacting to the fact that it was proposed by the president. Sixty-six percent (66%) of Democrats favor it, while 64% of Republicans oppose it. Meanwhile, a plurality (37%) of voters not affiliated with either party doesn’t know enough about it to take a position for or against. Most voters consistently believe that cutting government spending is good for the economy

Still, 62% of all voters think Congress is at least somewhat likely to approve some of the president’s jobs plan. That figure, however, includes just 17% who think passage is Very Likely. Twenty-nine percent (29%) feel Congress is unlikely to approve any of the plan.

At the same time, just 24% of voters believe increased government spending is more likely to create new jobs than reducing government regulations on business. Sixty-two percent (62%) think reduced regulation is a more likely job creator. Fourteen percent (14%) are not sure which course is better.

The Rasmussen Employment Index which measures workers’ perceptions of the labor market each month slipped a point in August to the lowest level measured in one year. The official national unemployment rate is now 9.1%, and the government recently announced that there was zero percent job growth last month.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on September 10-11, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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