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Take Back America 2006 Celinda Lake June 13, 2006.

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Presentation on theme: "Take Back America 2006 Celinda Lake June 13, 2006."— Presentation transcript:

1 Take Back America 2006 Celinda Lake June 13, 2006

2 Lake Research Partners – June Strategic Summary Women believe the country is going solidly in the wrong direction. People do not expect their Member of Congress to solve every problem, but they do want solutions and expect their representatives to make things better. Messages must go beyond issues to values and supply a powerful narrative that ideally includes a villain and a hero. Values oriented messages are key to winning women’s votes. Messages have to be unified, repeated, and powerfully framed to break through. Women rank the war, health care, and education as their priorities for Congress. Economically, they are most worried about health care costs and gas prices.

3 State of the Nation

4 Lake Research Partners – June Women are growing increasingly pessimistic about the direction of the country, with nearly two thirds saying that things have gotten off on the wrong track. Do you feel things in this country are going in the right direction, or have they gotten off on the wrong track? LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters. Wrong track: 66% Right Direction: 28% Don’t know: 7%

5 Lake Research Partners – June The Iraq war continues to dominate the concerns of voters overall. What do you think is the most important problem facing this country today? Gallup Conducted 4/10-13/06 1,000 adults

6 Lake Research Partners – June Women rank the economy and taxes, the war, and health care as their top problems facing their area today. LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters. What do you think is the number one problem facing this part of the country today -- that is, what is the problem that you and your family are most concerned about?

7 Lake Research Partners – June Democratic women see the war as the top national problem; Independents say the economy and taxes; Republicans cite terrorism and national defense. LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters. What do you think is the number one problem facing this part of the country today -- that is, what is the problem that you and your family are most concerned about?

8 Lake Research Partners – June Men are slightly more positive toward the President’s job performance than women. Men Women How would you rate the job being done by George W. Bush as President -- EXCELLENT, GOOD, just FAIR, or POOR?

9 Lake Research Partners – June Congress, as an institution, is also held in low esteem as the majority of men and women disapprove of the job being done. How would you rate the job that Congress is doing? Do you approve or disapprove of the job Congress is doing? LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters.

10 Lake Research Partners – June In the generic Congressional ballot, over half of women say they will vote Democrat compared to just over a third of men. LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters. Now turning to the election for Congress that will be held in November 2006 – If the election for Congress were being held today, and you had to make a choice, would you be voting for the Republican candidate or the Democratic candidate in your district? If Undecided, ask: And which party’s candidate do you lean toward at this time? WomenMen

11 Lake Research Partners – June Six in ten unmarried women report they will vote for the Democrat versus less than half married women. LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters. Now turning to the election for Congress that will be held in November 2006 – If the election for Congress were being held today, and you had to make a choice, would you be voting for the Republican candidate or the Democratic candidate in your district? If Undecided, ask: And which party’s candidate do you lean toward at this time? Married WomenUnmarried Women

12 Lake Research Partners – June Text of Restore America’s Promise-Reform statement Democrats believe it is time to restore America’s promise. The culture of corruption in Washington is hurting American families. Under Bush’s leadership and the most corrupt Congress in recent history we have record national debt; health care policy written by and for insurance and pharmaceutical industry lobbyists, and an energy policy written by big oil. Democrats offer a plan for real change and a new direction: true national security, with military strength second to none and homeland protection that guards our borders and ports. Tough reforms to crack down on lobbyists’ influence; affordable health care; and a focus on energy independence that also serves to create jobs and lower energy prices and stop our dependence on foreign oil. It is time to restore America’s promise.

13 Lake Research Partners – June Overall, framing a message under the theme of “Restoring America’s Promise” works best among voters. Which statement comes closer to your own point of view? Restore America’s Promise-Reform Democrat Closer Republican Closer Undecided Men Women

14 Lake Research Partners – June The theme of “Restoring America’s Promise” is even more effective among unmarried women. Which statement comes closer to your own point of view? Restore America’s Promise-Reform Democrat Closer Republican Closer Undecided Married Women Unmarried Women

15 Lake Research Partners – June Swing voters also respond to the reform frame. Which statement comes closer to your own point of view? Restore America’s Promise-Reform +31

16 Lake Research Partners – June A key progressive frame focuses on an America that values mutual opportunity for all and mutual responsibility to one another. It is time for America to return to the core values that have made us strong: mutual opportunity for all and mutual responsibility for each other. A Mutual Opportunity Society builds a stronger America by pulling our resources together, getting everyone to pay their fair share, ensuring equal rights and providing everyone who is willing to work the opportunity to get ahead.

17 Lake Research Partners – June For women, the economy and values can be linked into powerful narratives. The current state of economic conditions: Top TierMean%8-10% We need to create and keep good jobs here at home by providing incentives for companies to stay in America %50% 48. We need to develop new, sustainable, and renewable energy sources to put us on the forefront of the new economy and create energy independence %49% *56. Rising health care costs are jeopardizing many families’ economic security %45% 52. Real family values means valuing families by having affordable health care and jobs that pay well enough to actually let families spend time with each other %51% 46. We need to invest in the best education system in the world in order to remain a super power %46% * Indicates Split Sample Question

18 Lake Research Partners – June Looking at the budget, when framed in the context of the larger ideological debate, a strong majority of voters prefers our mutual opportunity society to the Presidents “owners” society. Some people say the federal budget should reflect the priorities of an ownership society, in which individuals are free from dependence on government and in control of their own lives. The President's budget is a step towards helping people achieve that independence. The budget should cut wasteful spending on social programs, reduce the deficit, and preserve the Bush tax cuts. The budget should reflect a faith in the American people that they can manage their lives - and their tax dollars - better than politicians in Washington D.C. Other people say the federal budget should reflect the priorities of a mutual opportunity society, in which everyone pays their fair share and everyone has the opportunity to benefit. The budget should be fiscally responsible, limiting borrowing and reducing the deficit. It should also preserve the most basic services that our country can provide for its citizens – quality education, access to affordable health care, and real public safety. The budget should ask for greater sacrifice from the wealthiest Americans, recognizing that we are stronger as a nation when we combine our resources. Ownership Society : 34% Mutual Opportunity Society: 57% OWNERSHIP VERSUS MUTUAL OPPORTUNITY LSPM/DR Survey conducted April 6-13, 2005; among 1,163 likely voters

19 Lake Research Partners – June When Americans are asked how they personally define values, the top two qualities they select are opportunity and compassion, followed by personal responsibility, and tolerance. A Major Part A Secondary Part Personal Definition of Values Ensuring that everyone is given an equal opportunity in life, regardless of their race or gender Being compassionate and helping those who are less fortunate Rewarding individual initiative and personal responsibility Having tolerance for those who have different values, backgrounds, and lifestyles Strengthening the traditional family by promoting marriage Being religious and making faith a part of your everyday life Raising standards of public decency in television, movies, and video games Promoting individuality and encouraging self- expression *NBC/Wall Street Journal Poll; December 9-13, 2004; 1,003 adults

20 Lake Research Partners – June Nearly six in ten women believe it is more important that Members of Congress possess a willingness to find practical, workable solutions than strength of values. Which of these qualities is the most important for a Member of Congress to possess: Strength of values and convictions, OR Willingness to find practical, workable solutions to the country’s problems? LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters.

21 The Issue Agenda: Economic Concerns

22 Lake Research Partners – June Women remain pessimistic about the state of the economy, with only a quarter reporting that it is excellent or good. In thinking about the economy, how would you rate the current state of the economy?

23 Lake Research Partners – June Women rank energy and gas prices and health care costs as the biggest economic issues facing their families. Continuing to think about the economy, which of these issues is the biggest economic issue facing your family? Would you say it is:

24 Lake Research Partners – June Women’s economic concerns for their families mirror their concerns for the country as a whole. Continuing to think about the economy, which of these issues is the biggest economic issue facing the country? Would you say it is:

25 Lake Research Partners – June Women tend to be pessimistic about their children’s standard of living in the future. Thinking about the economy and standard of living, do you think your children will be better off, worse off, or about the same as you when they are your age now. Well what would you imagine it will be like for today’s children? Lake Research Partners/Tarrance Group Battleground Poll, conducted 10/9-12/05, 1,003 likely voters, MoE +/-3.1%

26 Lake Research Partners – June The best testing proposals among women focus on protecting retirement pensions, banning the outsourcing of private information, strengthening tax enforcement, and investing in renewable energy sources. % “5” Ban the outsourcing of any private information w/out written consent. All questions are split sampled Mean Please give each policy a rating from 1 to 5, 5 = strongly favor it, 1 = strongly oppose it. Strengthen tax enforcement/ collect taxes from people/companies that set up shelters off shore. Invest in new sustainable and renewable energy sources. Expand… grants and loans to all students who want to go to college or get advanced training. Pass laws to protect retirement pensions from being raided or taken away by corps/ CEOs. No increasing c.c. interest rates of those who pay debts/cap interest rates at no more than 2x loan rates.

27 Lake Research Partners – June Popular second tier proposals revolve around eliminating tax incentives to outsource jobs, expanding small business assistance, increasing teacher pay, and providing universal health care. % “5” Expand small business loans & technical assistance to create jobs of the future here. All questions are split sampled Mean Please give each policy a rating from 1 to 5, 5 = strongly favor it, 1 = strongly oppose it. Increase teacher pay so education attracts top tier students to become teachers. Raise the minimum wage to $7.50 and index future increases to inflation. Provide universal health care for all Americans by an expanded Medicare system. Eliminate tax incentives to move jobs abroad and move them to create jobs here. Increase funding and increase R & D partnerships with universities.

28 Lake Research Partners – June It is our collective responsibility to ensure a dignified retirement for older Americans and to punish corporate officials who squander workers’ pensions. We need to protect our older Americans by maintaining a strong Social Security system. We need to protect Social Security from deep cuts in guaranteed benefits and increased risks of privatization. Retirement is a huge issue for women. *Lake Research Partners/Tarrance Group Battleground Poll, conducted 10/9-12/05, 1,003 likely voters, MoE +/-3.1%

29 Lake Research Partners – June Values are important in this debate. One of our strongest frames remains that it is just wrong for anyone who works hard, pays taxes and plays by the rules to go without decent health care. The public is suspicious about the recent changes to Medicare and do not believe that the law will succeed in lowering prescription drug prices. Americans believe that the program will primarily benefit the big drug companies over Medicare beneficiaries. To generate great urgency for major reform, remind voters that failure to act will make things even worse. Requiring profitable, big employers to pay their fair share. Subsidizing small businesses to offer health care. Women are health care voters. They respond to this as a values, economic and family issue. *Lake Research Partners/Tarrance Group Battleground Poll, conducted 10/9-12/05, 1,003 likely voters, MoE +/-3.1%

30 Lake Research Partners – June Our country must reduce our dependence upon foreign oil and stop price gouging by big oil companies. We can produce good jobs in the US by investing in energy efficiency and alternative fuels. If America takes the lead in energy technology it will not only increase the competitive position of American industry, the technology will become a major export and greatly reduce our unfavorable balance of trade and our foreign debt. It will protect consumers from soaring prices on all forms of energy—gasoline, heating oil and electricity. Lessening American dependence on foreign oil and investing in alternative fuel sources are key components of a future-oriented economic and national security agenda.

31 The Issue Agenda: National Security

32 Lake Research Partners – June A majority of women trust Democrats to do a better job handling the US campaign against terrorism. Which political party do you trust to do a better job handling the US campaign against terrorism?

33 Lake Research Partners – June Over a third of Americans worry that their family may be affected. “How concerned are you about the chance that you or your family might be the victim of a terrorist attack: a great deal, somewhat, not too much, or not at all?” Associated Press/Ipsos poll, conducted July 11-13, N = 1,000 adults nationwide. MoE ± 3.1%. 38% 62%

34 Lake Research Partners – June Border security is a top priority for voters, but it is even greater when it is discussed in the context of “homeland security” rather than “terrorism”. Immigration, however, is more likely to be thought of when discussing terrorism. (SPLIT SAMPLES COMBINED) “When you hear the phrase "protecting (our homeland security/America from terrorism)," what are the main things that come to mind? What do you think the main priorities of our country's leaders should be when it comes to protecting (our homeland security/America from terrorism)? What are the most important things you think elected officials should be doing to protect (America’s homeland security/America from terrorism)?” (OPEN-ENDED) Hart Research conducted July 5-6, N = 858 voters nationwide. MoE ± 3%. SPLIT SAMPLES OPEN-ENDED RESPONSE CATEGORY “HOMELAND SECURITY” SPLIT SAMPLE “TERRORISM” SPLIT SAMPLE “TERRORISM” – “HOMELAND SECURITY” DIFFERENCE Borders27%20%-7 Preventing Another 9/1118%9%-9 Protecting the Country12%8%-4 Immigration10%13%+3 Airports8% 0 Keeping Terrorists Out7%8%+1

35 Lake Research Partners – June Voters favor a multi-faceted approach to combating terrorism. They reject Bush’s doctrine of pre-emption and instead strongly support improving homeland security as a more important priority in the war on terrorism. (SPLIT SAMPLE) “I am going to read you two statements about combating terrorism and ask which one comes closer to your own point of view… Do you feel strongly about that or not?” Hart Research conducted July 5-6, N = 858 voters nationwide. MoE ± 3%. SPLIT SAMPLE “There is no adequate or affordable way to prepare for all the possible ways that terrorists might strike us here in the United States. Instead of spending billions on homeland security measures that may or may not be effective, we should focus our efforts on capturing and killing terrorists before they strike us – both by attacking their bases and training camps oversees, and using strong law enforcement to identify and arrest potential terrorists in the United States.” 26% favor “It is simply too risky to put all the focus of protecting America on the hope that we can capture or kill terrorists before they try to strike us. We also must invest in smart, tough measures such as strengthening our border and port security, installing detection devices that can find bombs hidden in cargo, stopping the spread of nuclear weapons, and increasing security at nuclear plants, chemical plants, and facilities where hazardous biological agents are stored.” 68% favor

36 Lake Research Partners – June With it’s concrete dollar figures showing Halliburton’s special treatment and greed – both in Iraq and in the Gulf post-Katrina, a message that emphasizes war profiteering is quite powerful for women. % Serious Doubts All Voters Women Bush and Cheney have undermined our security and preparedness, using it as an opportunity to reward their friends. In Iraq, more than $50 billion has gone to private contractors, often in no-bid contracts with little oversight, including $8.8 billion that is completely unaccounted for. Halliburton has overcharged for meals and fuel, and they are being investigated for bribery, bid-rigging and overcharging of U.S. taxpayers. Recently, the Bush administration awarded another $60 million in no-bid contracts to Halliburton for clean up work related to Hurricane Katrina. 53%57% Bush and Cheney have undermined our security and preparedness, using it as an opportunity to reward their corporate friends rather than do what we need. They have awarded billions in no-bid contracts to Halliburton and other defense companies while our troops continue to lack necessary body armor and armor for tanks. This administration is more concerned about profits for their friends in the defense industry than they are for the safety and security of our troops. 48%55% There is a reason Halliburton, where Cheney served as CEO and still draws money today, has made billions off of no-bid contracts in Iraq. It is the same reason we are constructing permanent bases throughout Iraq, with access to oil deposits in the North and South. And the same reason there ’ s never been an exit plan. We went into Iraq for big business – oil and defense contractors – that have wanted a base of operations in the Middle East for years. These ties are undermining our security. 42%46% *Question asked of ½ of the sample

37 The Issue Agenda: War in Iraq

38 Lake Research Partners – June Women are more likely than men to believe that going to war with Iraq was a mistake. Considering everything, do you think the United States did the right thing in going to war with Iraq or do you think it was a mistake? “We have troops, you know out there fighting and helping other people, and we have everybody back here wanting to bring them home and not even wanting to go out there, so it’s kind of confusing.” CA woman

39 Lake Research Partners – June A majority of women support withdrawing at least some but only a quarter would withdraw all of the troops from Iraq by the end of the year. Enumerating the monthly costs actually suppresses voters’ appetite for withdrawal. (Considering the consequences of the war– 58 Americans killed and 122 wounded just last month and $6.8 billion spent last month alone) Which comes closest to your view about what the U.S. should do about the number of troops in Iraq by the end of 2006? Asked With ConsequencesAsked Without Consequences All Voters Women

40 Lake Research Partners – June Focus group participants were somber in discussing the impact of the war on the country – both in psychological and economic terms. “It does affect the economy. All the money we’re putting into the war can be used here.” Arizona woman “I don’t personally have a family member over there, but there’s going to be consequences, our soldiers are dying. And it does affect the economy. We have this huge deficit, there’s going to be consequences.” Pennsylvania woman “We’ve lost too many people. It will never be worth the cost of all those men who haven’t come home.” Arizona senior

41 Lake Research Partners – June While participants want our troops home, they worry about the consequences of an immediate withdrawal. “It’s something that we have started. Maybe all of us agree that we shouldn’t have, but you just can’t leave those people there now. Since we have caused this problem, we’re going to have to solve some of this problem ourselves. That’s the way I look at it. And in order to do that is to train these people and let them take over the country and do what they want to do.” Arizona senior “We can’t take 100% of the troops and come home and walk out one day and say goodbye…we caused so much trouble for the people who live there that we need to help them get back on their feet somehow.” Pennsylvania woman “I worry it’ll be never-ending. I never believed that there was anything hidden over there, and I always thought there was another solution, oh, that we shouldn’t go by ourselves…but now, I don’t think we should just pull out…all the lives that have already been lost, it’ll all be for nothing.” Pennsylvania woman

42 Lake Research Partners – June Messaging on Iraq Despite voters’ disapproval of the way the war is being handled, they are not ready to fully condemn it. Voters are split on whether we should have gone into Iraq in the first place, and tend to believe that we should stay in Iraq, at least temporarily, to help rebuild and set up a government. Support for the troops is very high, and voters often see a criticism of the war as criticism of the troops. Drawing a clear distinction between the administration’s misguided policies and soldiers who are just doing their jobs, and emphasizing support for the troops, is key in avoiding some of that knee-jerk criticism. In fact, one of the strongest messages revolves around support for troops and veterans. Voters are split on whether we should have a timeline for withdrawing the troops, but are hungry for a clear exit strategy, which they do not believe Bush has. A majority (75 percent)* do not think there will be a stable government in Iraq soon, and offering clear, concise ideas on how to stabilize the area and withdraw our troops can be a powerful message with voters. * CNN/Gallup 1/20-22/06; surveyed 1,006 adults; margin of error +/-3%

43 Lake Research Partners – June The issue of Iran has also become salient, though most don’t see it as an immediate threat. What comes closest to your view- Iran poses an immediate threat to the United States, Iran poses a long-term threat to the U.S., or Iran does not pose a threat to the U.S. at all? *CNN/Gallup,1/20-22/06, 1,006 adults, MOE +/-3% Eighty percent are convinced that Iran is developing nuclear weapons, and a strong majority believes it’s likely Iran would be likely to attack the U.S. and Europe or Israel (66 percent and 72 percent respectively), or will provide the weapons to terrorists (82 percent likely) Pew Research Center, 2/1-5/06, 1,502 adults, MOE +/-3%

44 Lake Research Partners – June Despite concern about Iran’s nuclear program, a strong majority believe that the United Nations should take the lead in handing the issue. “Do you think the war with Iraq has made us less secure or more secure?” *Pew Research Center, 2/1-5/06, 1,502 adults, MOE +/-3%

45 New Direction for America

46 Lake Research Partners – June A majority of women believe that reforms alone will work, though over a third believe that an influx of new Members is needed. 1.Some people say that the primary cause of the current ethical scandals facing Congress is that it is too easy to break the existing rules. What is needed are reforms, tougher enforcement of existing rules, and transparency to make it much easier for the public and the media to see when existing rules are being broken. 2.Other people say that the primary cause of the current ethical scandals facing Congress is the current culture of Washington which affects all Members of Congress sooner or later. We need to change Congress with new Members who pledge to change this culture and operate with new rules. LRP-The Tarrance Group. Feb , 2006; 1000 Registered Voters. Now I'd like to read you two viewpoints. Please tell me which one comes closest to your own.

47 Lake Research Partners – June Out of a list of progressive policy reforms and governmental reforms, women tend to gravitate towards the former, particularly those that focus on safeguarding individuals’ financial well-being. Proposed Policy Changes: Top TierMean% 10 Pass new laws to protect employee retirement pensions from being raided or taken away by large corporations or CEO’s % Invest in new sustainable and renewable energy sources to create good paying jobs, and cut energy prices % Require that people put in charge of public safety positions possess credentials, experience, and a record of achievement relevant to the position % Ban the outsourcing of any private information on American citizens — such as financial or medical records — without written consent % Strengthen tax enforcement and close loopholes to collect taxes from individuals and companies that are setting up shelters off shore and using other tax loopholes to avoid paying their fair share % Increase the minimum wage from $6.35 an hour to $6.85 an hour %

48 Lake Research Partners – June On a second tier, women support changing rules to prevent lobbyists from influencing Congress with pressure and special favors. Proposed Policy Changes: Second TierMean%10 Stop members of Congress from pressuring companies to hire members of their political party or lobbyists in exchange for access % Pass new laws to require full disclosure of credit card interest rates, to forbid increasing rates of those who pay their debts, and to cap credit card interest % Hold lobbyists accountable and increase reporting requirements so that lobbyists must report and make public any contact with Congress within 24 hours % Prohibit lobbyists from planning and providing trips for members of Congress % Increase from 2 to 5 years the limit on when former members of Congress can become Lobbyists and keep all lobbyists off the floors of Congress %


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