Poll: Education *Not* A Top Issue for Voters?

June 25, 2008 | Blog

Last week I wrote this post entitled Poll: Education A Top Issue For Voters.

Oh, well.

Today, a new national poll released by the Public Education Network (PEN) suggests something slightly different, although quite honestly I don’t believe it contradicts last week’s title. In the PEN poll, education was ranked as the third “most important” issue, by 12 percent of respondents. Gas prices (22 percent) and jobs/economy (19 percent) led the way. Trailing education were health care (11 percent), taxes (8 percent) and crime/drugs (8 percent).

Unlike the recent Pew poll which allowed respondents to select several issues that were important to them, this question requires poll respondents to select only one issue as the most important. So, the fact that education comes out third isn’t all that bad given the intensity of feeling and economic importance of issues such as employment and fuel costs.

In terms of the presidential election, today’s PEN poll found that slightly less than half (48 percent) of respondents cited the candidates’ positions on education as “one of the most important” issues or “very important” to how they will vote in November.

There’s lots more good stuff in this poll worth checking out as well.

For more, here is pollster Celinda Lake’s analysis (PPT). And here’s the Education Week story.

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