A new poll finds that 90% of voters say they encountered information in the 2010 election cycle that was “misleading or false,” and 56% say this happened frequently.The University of Maryland put out a survey that showed “strong evidence that voters were substantially misinformed on many of the key issues of the campaign. Such misinformation was correlated with how people voted and their exposure to various news sources.”
Among that misinformation was that:
Though the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) concluded that the stimulus legislation has saved or created 2.0-5.2 million jobs, only 8% of voters thought most economists who had studied it concluded that the stimulus legislation had created or saved several million jobs. Most (68%) believed that economists estimate that it only created or saved a few jobs and 20% even believed that it resulted in job losses. Though the CBO concluded that the health reform law would reduce the budget deficit, 53% of voters thought most economists have concluded that health reform will increase the deficit. Though the Department of Commerce says that the US economy began to recover from recession in the third quarter of 2009 and has continued to grow since then, only 44% of voters thought the economy is starting to recover, while 55% thought the economy is still getting worse. Though the National Academy of Sciences has concluded that climate change is occurring, 45% of voters thought most scientists think climate change is not occurring (12%) or that scientists are evenly divided (33%).
The University of Maryland also put out a study today that showed Fox News viewers were the most misinformed on the issues.