The latest Fox News poll shows an interesting way that respondent perceptions can be manipulated for a desired result — in this case, to focus on those big-spending Democrats in Washington.
In the latest poll, three questions in a row referred to the stimulus bill as “the economic stimulus and spending plan,” with two of them listing an $800 billion price tag. It should be noted that the poll falsely says the bill “includes spending nearly $800 billion dollars of taxpayer money,” omitting the fact that the bill’s price tag includes $350 billion in tax cuts.
Then question 19: “Do you think the economic recovery legislation that passed last week is better described as a stimulus bill or a spending bill?”
The answer was Stimulus 31, Spending 52.
On the other hand, many other questions show results roughly in line with the AP/GfK poll earlier today: Voters widely approve of Obama, just barely approve of Congressional Dems, widely disapprove of Congressional Republicans, and narrowly approve of the stimulus bill. Voters say Obama genuinely sought to work in a bipartisan way with Republicans while the GOP did not return the favor, etc.
Not surprisingly, though, people think the imaginary bill that spends $800 billion in taxpayer money is too big.