|U.S. Constitution Online|
|Quick Links: FAQ Topics Forums Documents Timeline Kids Vermont Constitution Map Citation||USConstitution.net|
This site has conducted an unscientific survey on various issues since July of 1998. The results, while interesting in most cases, are to be taken with a grain of salt - the results can easily be skewed by an individual or group of individuals; the sample is, by nature, not representative (because it consists only of Web users who visit my site and bother to view the survey page and submit an opinion).
This page includes results from 2004. For results from other years, please go to the Main Results Page.
Question 77, December 2004 Each election cycle, the voters vote in November, votes are tallied, and the news media report on the electoral count for each candidate - and in January a winner is inaugurated as President. In between, a lot goes on, including the actual electoral vote in December. Electors have a lot of actual power, even if it has never really been used. Only in a handful of cases have electors gone against the vote of the people. Electors, in fact, have a pretty anonymous job, and cast their votes in relative obscurity. Should we focus more on this important job and find our more about who the electors are?
|The vote of the Electoral College is really just a formality, barely newsworthy. I don't care to know more about the electors.||33||11.96|
|Electors have an important role to play and can, in theory, have a huge impact on the election - we should know who they are and hear more about the casting of votes in the Electoral College.||243||88.04|
Question 76, November 2004 A quadrennial question: what is your opinion of the Electoral College?
|The Electoral College is an essential part of our constitutional system, keeping the states involved in the process as states. It should be left alone.||399||28.54|
|The Electoral College serves a purpose, but could use some updating, such as the elimination of faithless electors and the use of electoral districts such as in Maine and Nebraska.||246||17.60|
|The Electoral College is an outdated and undemocratic institution that makes our elections more complicated than they should be - it should be replaced with direct elections.||753||53.86|
Question 75, October 2004 (Part 2) For whom will you vote in November 2004?
Note: these results combine September's and October's responses. All duplicate votes were removed before tabulation.
Question 75, September 2004 (Part 1) For whom will you vote in November 2004?
Question 74, August 2004 In July 2004, the Democrats held their national convention, where no one was surprised by John Kerry's nomination as the Democratic presidential hopeful. In August 2004, the Republicans held their national convention, and even less of a surprise, President George Bush was selected as their nominee for the November elections. Gone are the days when a convention held some mystery - the result these days is a foregone conclusion. But even so, the conventions are now being touted as useful to the electorate, a way to get the candidates in front of the American people, and for the party to get out its message. Do the conventions still serve a useful purpose?
|Yes, the conventions still do serve a valid purpose, even if the results are known before hand.||67||25.38|
|The conventions would be a waste of time were it not for the publicity the candidates get - especially for the challenger, it is a good time to be introduced to the electorate.||54||20.45|
|The conventions are a waste of time, money, and resources. Some other way of nominating a candidate should be created.||143||54.17|
Question 73, July 2004 A new tradition is being implemented at USConstitution.net. Each July, this survey will be offered, allowing us to track, over time, the political persuasion of our visitors. Questions are asked about party affiliation as well as economic and social ranking on a scale of 1 to 9 (1 being very conservative and 9 being very liberal).
|Response||Count||Percentage||Avg Econ||Avg Soc|
|1 = Very Conservative||216||21.75|
|5 = Moderate||136||13.70|
|9 = Very Liberal||53||5.34|
|1 = Very Conservative||250||25.18|
|5 = Moderate||78||7.85|
|9 = Very Liberal||199||20.04|
Question 72, June 2004 Recently, photographs of American service members acting as guards in Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison have emerged, depicting the soldiers placing Iraqi prisoners in sexually explicit and degrading positions. Opponents of the President are calling for the resignation of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in response, citing a failure of leadership in the Department. What would you do if you were President?
|Secretary Rumsfeld did nothing wrong, and his expertise is needed in the Department - I would keep him.||344||48.59|
|Though he did not direct these acts, as head of the department, he is ultimately responsible - he should issue an apology, but stay on.||123||17.37|
|Rumsfeld is hurting my administration - he must be fired.||241||34.04|
Question 71, May 2004 In 2002, the Supreme Court ruled that judges cannot make an imposition of a death sentence - only juries can. There are currently over 100 people in death row in the United States, sent there by judges. A new case is now before the Court, seeking to apply the 2002 ruling retroactively to the sentences of these 100 inmates. The Court heard arguments in April and expected to rule in July. How should the Court rule?
|The courts played by the rules in place at the time - the victims should not be punished because the rules have changed. The current sentences should remain in place.||136||32.61|
|With something as important and final as the death penalty, all consideration should be given. The death sentences should all be commuted to life in prison.||34||8.15|
|With something as important and final as the death penalty, all consideration should be given. The death sentences should all be reviewed by juries.||104||24.94|
|The death penalty is wrong, and the Court should use this opportunity to abolish it.||143||34.29|
Question 70, April 2004 In March 2004, the 9/11 Commission asked that National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice testify in public. The White House refused to let her do so for quite some time, but finally agreed to her testimony. The White House's argument was that Rice's testimony would be an infringement upon the separation of powers. What do you think of that?
|Rice should not testify - the President's sitting advisors should be immune from any such hearings.||108||26.73|
|While I would normally agree that she should not testify, the work of the commission is so important to the nation, some traditions must be bent - she should testify.||91||22.52|
|I don't agree with the concept of executive privilege - there should be no debate of the matter, she should have testified with no argument.||205||50.74|
Question 69, March 2004 Recent events in Massachusetts, San Francisco, and New Paltz, New York have brought the issue of gay marriage to the front page. The President and many members of Congress have called for a constitutional amendment to define marriage as being between a man and a woman. Is this necessary?
|Yes, marriage must be constitutionally defined as a union between a man and a woman.||583||28.29|
|No, though marriage should only be between a man and a woman, amending the Constitution is the wrong way to go.||278||13.49|
|No, there is no reason to deny gay people the ability to marry at all, let alone through a constitutional amendment.||1200||58.22|
Question 68, February 2004 The Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case of Christopher Simmons, who was 17 years old when he brutally killed a woman in 1993. Though sentenced to death, the Missouri Supreme Court found the sentence violated the Constitution's ban on "cruel and unusual punishment," considering Simmons's age at the time of the crime. The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld death sentences for minor offenders before, lastly in 1989. Should the Court overturn itself this time?
|Yes, the Court should overturn - if the person is not an adult in the eyes of the law, the person is of some diminished capacity. Minor offenders should never be executed.||228||40.57|
|No, the Court should leave its prior ruling stand - each act and each offender must be looked at on a case-by-case basis, and those deserving execution should get execution.||193||34.34|
|No. There is no reason why minor children, capable of killing, should be let off easy. These offenders must be treated the same as any murderer.||141||25.09|
Question 67, January 2004 The Supreme Court will soon be hearing the case of Office of Independent Counsel v Favish, where Allan Favish is suing to gain access to Vince Foster's autopsy photos (Foster was a Clinton counsel who committed suicide in 1993). The government wants to keep the photos private, but Favish claims a right to see them under the Freedom of Information Act. What do you think?
|No, the photos should not be released - there are clear privacy concerns for the Foster family here, and nothing to be gained by the release||127||49.42|
|Yes, the photos should be released. As government documents, the public does have a right to see them, and there is the potential that more about Foster's death could be uncovered if more people can examine the evidence||130||50.58|