New Zogby poll casts different light

Maher, Steve (SD-MS) SMAHER at GI.COM
Wed Feb 11 12:43:00 MST 1998

In the Nov. 1996 Presidential election, many polls were commissioned,
which predicted the outcome as a landslide victory for Bill Clinton,
winning by as much as 30 percentage points over Bob Dole. Most were
proven wildly inaccurate, when the marging came out to 8 percentage
points. The only poll to call the election correctly, was that done
by the Zogby organization.

Now, a new Zogby Poll has been taken, commissioned by radio talk show
host Rush Limbaugh. Zogby's organization took data from Feb. 8, 1998
thru Feb. 11, 1998, in a survey of 1,000 likely voters:

1. Would you like your children to look up to President Clinton as a
personal role model, or would you prefer that they did not look up to
him as a role model?

a. Yes, look up to him         23.5%
b. No, do not look up to him   63.2%
c. Not sure                    13%

2. Suppose you were ready to hire a candidate who was well-qualified
for the job, but then you find out that they like to have consensual
sex with subordinates. Would you still hire the person, or would you
not hire him or her?

Would hire        28%
Would not hire    58%
Not sure          13%

3. Would you consider it immoral for a U.S. President to have
consensual sex with a 21-year-old intern, or would you consider
this acceptable behavior?

Immoral           66.7%
Acceptable        15.4%
Not sure          18%

4. If your spouse had sex with someone he or she was supervising,
would you consider this immoral, or would the behavior be acceptable?

Immoral           88.8%
Acceptable         3.5%
Not sure           7.7%

5. Suppose you were engaged to someone and you find out that they
cheated on you repeatedly and continued to do so. Would you still
marry that person, or would you break off the engagement?

Still marry the person     2.4%
Break off the engagement  89.1%
Not sure                   8.5%


John Zogby, president of the polling organization that bears his name,
evaluated the results of his poll, and commented on the seemingly odd
circumstance of the President's rising popularity in the midst of
various scandals plaguing his administration:

"To those who suggest that Americans do not care about moral behavior
and character in their leadership, this poll is a powerful antidote.
Why, then, are the President's job performance ratings and favorability
ratings, going up?

"What we have here, are competing values. Americans care deeply about
the Presidency, the results of an election, and that any person is
innocent until proven guilty. These are strongly held and sacred
values to Americans, but they are in competition with stories of alleged
immoral behavior.

"Clearly, and not surprisingly, the American people are not ready to undo
an election or tinker with an institution, until evidence is strong and
incontrovertible. Meanwhile, the President has built up a huge reservoir
of good will, as the  economy continues to do well, the budget deficit
appears to be eliminated, and the United States is staring down Saddam

"But make no mistake about it. Should evidence become firm, these high
numbers, especially those that suggest they're rallying to him in the
midst of his State of the Union Message, and press charges, can plummet."

   - John Zogby, Feb. 11, 1998

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