Monday, February 16, 2009

National Priorities

What do people name as the top national priority? You're thinking, "Aha! Trick question! It's so obvious!"

No trick. Just like you guessed, it's the economy. A CBS News/NYTimes poll had 60 percent of adults nationwide saying the economy is, to borrow from CNN, job #1.

In second place? Other.

I don't know what the hell other is, given the long list of topics scoring from 2 or 3 percent. In that list you've got stuff like war in Iraq, family values, education, health care, poverty, and the ever-popular "unsure." Given the margin of error, there is a huge tie for second among nine different topics.

Other recent surveys show largely the same thing -- economy first, a host of other issues tied at a distant second. What people know out there is that things are bad, getting worse, and there's not an overload of confidence in government's ability -- Democratic or Republican -- to fix the mess. Sometimes political knowledge comes down to direct experience, and I'm betting average people out there have a hell of a lot more direct experience with job loss and tough economic times than do the suits in D.C. of either party.

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