Pearl Ford Dowe, one of the four political scientists from the University of Arkansas who founded the poll, said Blair-Rockefeller is “positioned to become the definitive source of accurate information about the region’s politics and policy.” This potential is largely due to the lack of accurate data currently available about Southern attitudes & trends among minority groups.
Most of the data has been withheld for analysis, but some interesting results have already been released.
Two very interesting findings from the poll relate to President Obama & his job performance, particularly how his performance is seen within the African-American community.
According to a press release from the Rockefeller Institute, the BR Poll shows Obama’s popularity sinking among African-Americans, despite what Dowe calls the “conventional wisdom…that black Southerners traditionally vote Democratic and that they support and agree with President Barack Obama because he is African American.”
Dowe attributes the decline to “a continuing disparity in unemployment and economic opportunities for African Americans nationwide, as well as what appears to be a reticence by the Obama administration to address racially polarizing issues, such as the African-American unemployment rate which currently averages 16 percent, class and racial disparities in public school outcomes, and the role of the Department of Justice in addressing the racialization of the criminal justice structure.”
Poll findings also indicate that Democrats are facing another tough election in 2012. More than half of respondents who are 65 years and older disapprove of Obama’s job performance.
We will have more data & analysis for you as the results become available.
About the Blair-Rockefeller Poll
The poll was conducted online between November 3 & November 30, 2010 by Knowledge Networks. However, the poll did not suffer from the limitations of most online polls, according to Mike Dennis, Executive Vice President of Government & Academic Research. As an example, Dennis told attendees at the announcement press conference that respondents who did not have computer or internet access were provided access by the group. This provided equal representation to lower income & rural respondents who otherwise would have been unaccounted for in the BR Poll.
An extremely large sample size of 3,406 also added credibility & accuracy to the poll. The sample included 1,649 non-Hispanic whites, 825 African Americans and 932 Latinos. Geographically, 1,689 respondents reside in Southern states, and 1,717 reside in “non-South” states.
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