News Interest Index: Public Hearing Positive News About Obama Transition

  • December 11, 2008

As President-elect Barack Obama prepares to take office and announces choices for key cabinet posts, a majority of Americans (56%) says news stories about the incoming administration are mostly positive. Very few (3%) say what they are hearing or reading about the new Obama administration is mostly negative, while four-in-ten (38%) say the coverage is a mix of both positive and negative news.

Two-thirds (67%) of Democrats say news stories about Obama are mostly positive, compared with fewer than half of Republicans (46%) and 55% of independents. Republicans are divided, with 46% saying the stories have been a mix of positive and negative. The survey was completed before the arrest of Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich on corruption charges that include allegations he sought to use the selection of Obama's successor in the Senate for his personal advantage.

Many Americans continued to track the transition last week – 36% say they followed transition developments very closely – but with the debate in Congress over a multi-billion dollar plan to help the Detroit automakers stave off bankruptcy, official news that the nation was in recession, and reports that more than 500,000 jobs were lost in November, the public focused even more closely on economic news.

Read the full report Public Hearing Positive News About Obama Transition on the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press Web site.