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Gallup Poll: Stock Market Concerns Low on List of Important Issues for Voters in Presidential Election

Aired October 25, 2000 - 2:32 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

LOU WATERS, CNN ANCHOR: For voters in this hotly contested race, do concerns over the stock market volatility play into their choice for president? And if so, how?

For more about that, we turn to our Gallup Poll editor in chief Frank Newport -- Frank.

FRANK NEWPORT, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, GALLUP POLL: Well, Lou, the Nasdaq is down over a 100 points again today. People have asked the question: I wonder if the stock market going down is going to affect people one way or the other or if it goes up between now and November 7th. Well, our data from this last weekend suggests that it probably won't have a great effect.

We asked very directly: How important are these issues going to be in your choice in who you want to vote for. Not surprisingly, we've heard so much about this in all the debates and in all the speeches, education and Social Security are the two big issues. The Middle East, actually, somewhat lower in importance, but look at the stock market. Whether or not the presidents would affect the stock market is really down only to 42 percent of likely voters. They just don't think that is a major issue that their basing their vote on.

Now, we wanted to know just at investors. Now this is a surprising number. Seven out of 10 likely voters say they are invested in the stock market. That's a higher number than the nation as a whole. Of course, likely voters probably a little more likely to be the type who would be invested. We broke them out and said, all right, is it important to you? Well, here we only find it is up to 50 percent. Those are people that don't own stock. Naturally, that's not important. But 50 percent of those who have stock say yes. How the candidates would handle the stock market or the result of their elected, what its relationship would be would affect them. Still, on a relative basis, a low number compared to, as you saw, Social Security and so forth.

Now, among these investors, these are likely voter investors, who would do the better job? Who would have the more positive impact on their investments? Well, Bush wins 46 to 35. As you can see, a slight edge for Bush. We should note, of course, that investors are somewhat more likely to be Republican in general. Maybe that's why their tilting to Bush. But all in all, it doesn't look like whatever the stock market does is probably going to be the major factor in the vote on November 7th.

Lou, back to you.

WATERS: All right, Gallup's editor in chief, Frank Newport.

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