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United States Constitution Amendment Survey | Aspen Ideas Festival - Penn Schoen Berland (PSB)
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United States Constitution Amendment Survey | Aspen Ideas Festival - Penn Schoen Berland (PSB)

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PSB Survey of American constitution tells about its current implementation and it depicts that American people are behind the basic principles of constitution and want changes that will give people …

PSB Survey of American constitution tells about its current implementation and it depicts that American people are behind the basic principles of constitution and want changes that will give people more power.

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  • 1. NEW YORK • WASHINGTON • DENVER • SEATTLE • LOS ANGELES • SAN FRANCISCO • AUSTIN• LONDON • HONG KONG • BEIJING • DUBAIASPEN IDEAS FESTIVAL“DOES THE US CONSTITUTION STILL WORK FOR21ST CENTURY AMERICA?”JULY 9, 2010©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.
  • 2. METHODOLOGY©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.1CONFIDENTIALBetween June 18 and June 22, 2010, PSB conducted 1000 online interviews with GPAmericans.Between June 30 and July 5, PSB conducted an additional 500 online interviews with GPAmericans to gain insight on supplemental questions.• The following audiences are shown throughout this report:• Gender• Male (M)• Female (F)• Region• Northeast (NE)• Midwest (MW)• South (S)• West (W)• Political Affiliation• Democrat (Strong or weak) (D)• Republican (Strong or weak) (R)• Independent (I)• Income• Less than $75k annual household income (<$75k)• More than $75k annual household income (>$75k)• The margin of error is +/-3.1% for the first fielding, +/-4.4 for the re-field.
  • 3. TABLE OF CONTENTS©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.2This presentation outlines America’s attitudes towards the following:1234The U.S. Constitution as a Governing DocumentRights Protected in the U.S. ConstitutionThe Current System of Government Under the U.S.ConstitutionWhat should change? And What Should Not Change?
  • 4. FOUR CLEAR TRENDS TO WATCH©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.3The American people are solidly behind the basicprinciples of the ConstitutionThe American people are solidly behind the basicprinciples of the ConstitutionBut they are divided on its interpretationBut they are divided on its interpretationAre deeply frustrated with its currentimplementationAre deeply frustrated with its currentimplementationAnd want changes that give the people morepowerAnd want changes that give the people morepower1234
  • 5. FUNDAMENTAL ATTITUDES ABOUT THECONSTITUTION©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.4Americans say that theConstitution is a timelessdocument and should bechanged minimally.Most say the Constitution is stilleffective today, more than 200years after it was written, but aresplit as to whether theConstitution should beinterpreted broadly or literally.Americans say that theConstitution is a timelessdocument and should bechanged minimally.Most say the Constitution is stilleffective today, more than 200years after it was written, but aresplit as to whether theConstitution should beinterpreted broadly or literally.
  • 6. THE CONSTITUTION IS STILL EFFECTIVE ANDSHOULD BE CHANGED MINIMALLY©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.53260NeedssignificantupdatesIs timelessand shouldbe changedminimallyThe Constitution…3054Is no longer aseffective as itwas when it waswrittenIs stilleffectivetoday• Although, approximately one-third say the Constitution needs significantupdates and is no longer as effective as it was when it was written.
  • 7. AMERICANS ARE OPEN TO BROADINTERPRETATION OF THE CONSTITUTION• Women and Democrats are more likely to be open to broad interpretationswhile men and Republicans more likely to be strict constructionists.©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.6Which of the following is closest to your view?The U.S.Constitutionshould beinterpreted asliterally as possibleThe U.S.Constitutionshould be morebroadly interpretedto take intoaccount thechanges of modernsociety42 14 43Don’t knowAllGender Region Political Affiliation IncomeM F NE MW S W D R I <$75k >$75kThe U.S. Constitution should be interpreted asliterally as possible42 48 37 34 44 45 43 24 69 41 45 36The U.S. Constitution should be more broadlyinterpreted to take into account the changes ofmodern society43 40 46 48 39 43 44 65 23 42 40 52Don’t know 14 12 17 19 17 12 13 11 8 17 15 12
  • 8. MOST AMERICANS SAY THAT THE SYSTEM OFCHECKS AND BALANCES WORKS WELL• Across all subgroups, a majority of Americans support the system of checks andbalances among the branches of government and say it is effective in preventing anysingle branch from having too much power.©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.7Which of the following is closest to your view?6419Checks andbalances workswell (because itprevents any onebranch from having toomuch power )Checks andbalances doesnot work well(because it inhibits toomuch thegovernment’s ability toget anything done)
  • 9. ONLY ONE QUARTER OF AMERICANS SAY THEPRESS HAS TOO MUCH FREEDOM©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.8Do you think there is too much or too little freedom of the press?4628188The right amount Too much Too little Dont know
  • 10. ATTITUDES ABOUT CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.9Americans say Freedom of speech is themost important right the U.S. Constitutionguarantees.The majority of Americans would like tosee the Constitution protect more rights –notably expanding equality and privacyrights.Americans are split as to whether theConstitution protects all citizens equally, andquestion extending citizens’ rights tocorporations, criminals, and terrorists.The majority of Americans believes thatterrorists should be treated differently thanother criminals.Rightsfor AllRightsforSome
  • 11. AMERICANS SAY FREEDOM OF SPEECH IS THEMOST IMPORTANT RIGHT THE CONSTITUTIONGUARANTEESLeastimportantrightMostimportantright010100Right tobear armsFreedomof thepressRight totrial byjuryNo cruel or unusualpunishmentRight tovoteFreedomof religionFreedomof speech(85)FreedomofassemblyRight to“plead the5th”You will now see the rights that are currently protected by the Constitution. Using your mouse, please arrange the individualrights from right to left in terms of which is most important.No unauthorizedarrests(55)
  • 12. MAJORITY AGREE CONSTITUTION SHOULD PROTECTMORE RIGHTS©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.11Which of the following is closest to your view?1061 The Constitution shouldprotect more rightsThe Constitution shouldprotect fewer rights
  • 13. AMERICANS’ ATTITUDES ON RIGHTS THAT SHOULD BEGUARANTEED©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.12Which of the following rights do you think the U.S. Constitution should guarantee, if any?multiple responses permitted22414347474951515555565965686970Right to equality regardless of genderRight to equalityRight to privacyRight not to be enslavedRight to own propertyRight to an educationRight to equality regardless of sexual orientationRight to an attorneyRight to security of personRight not to incriminate yourselfRight to social securitiesRight not to be torturedRight to health careRight to get marriedRight to employmentRight to paid vacation time
  • 14. AMERICANS ARE SPLIT OVER WHETHER THECONSTITUTION PROTECTS EVERYONE EQUALLY• Men and Republicans are more likely to say that the Constitution protectseveryone, while women and Democrats are more likely to say that it protectssome more than others.©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.13Which of the following is closest to your view?The U.S.Constitutionprotects somepeople more thanothersThe U.S.Constitutionprotects everyoneequally44 47AllGender Region Political Affiliation IncomeM F NE MW S W D R I <$75k >$75kThe U.S. Constitution protects everyone equally 47 59 36 35 47 46 59 38 69 43 43 59The U.S. Constitution protects some people morethan others44 32 55 54 43 46 34 54 21 52 47 35Don’t know 9 8 9 11 9 9 7 8 10 6 10 5
  • 15. AMERICANS DIVIDED OVER CIVIL LIBERTIES VS.NATIONAL SECURITY©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.14Which of the following is closest to your view?Protecting national security ismore important than civil liberties44%Civil liberties are more importantthan protecting national security.39%
  • 16. MORE THAN HALF SEE CIRCUMSTANCES WHERE THEPOLICE COULD VIOLATE CIVIL LIBERTIES TO PROTECTNATIONAL SECURITY©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.15Which of the following is closest to your view?There arecircumstancesunder which thepolice should beallowed to violatecivil liberties toprotect nationalsecurity.There are NOcircumstancesunder which thepolice should beallowed to violatecivil liberties toprotect nationalsecurity.Don’t know56 13 31AllGender Region Political Affiliation IncomeM F NE MW S W D R I <$75k >$75kThere are circumstances under which the policeshould be allowed to violate civil liberties in orderto protect national security.56 59 52 58 62 54 50 54 61 56 54 61There are no circumstances under which thepolice should be allowed to violate civil liberties inorder to protect national security.31 32 31 30 21 33 37 35 24 33 31 32Don’t know 13 9 17 12 16 13 13 11 16 11 15 7
  • 17. 5141AMERICANS QUESTION EXTENDING CITIZENS’ RIGHTSTO CORPORATIONS, CRIMINALS, AND TERRORISTS©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.16How much do you agree with the following statement: “____ should have the same rights as citizens guaranteed by the Constitution.”64 803214AgreeDisagreeCriminals Terrorists60328 YesNoDont knowShould the judicialsystem treatterroristsdifferently thancriminals?Corporations
  • 18. Despite satisfaction with the Constitution, only 25%of Americans are satisfied with the way thegovernment functions todayNearly 70% of Americans say that the Governmenttoday is functioning WORSE than intended.Despite satisfaction with the Constitution, only 25%of Americans are satisfied with the way thegovernment functions todayNearly 70% of Americans say that the Governmenttoday is functioning WORSE than intended.ATTITUDES ABOUT THE CURRENT SYSTEM OFGOVERNMENT©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.17By 2 to 1, Americans agree that thesystem works best when the Executiveand Legislative branches are controlled bydifferent parties, and the majority ofAmericans would like to see morebipartisanship (58%).
  • 19. ONLY 25% OF AMERICANS SATISFIED WITH THEWAY GOVERNMENT FUNCTIONS TODAY©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.18How satisfied are you with the way the federal government functions today?25%25% Satisfied withthe way thefederalgovernmentfunctions71%71% Dissatisfiedwith the waythe federalgovernmentfunctions
  • 20. MAJORITY SAY THAT GOVERNMENT TODAY DOES NOTWORK AS WELL AS THE FRAMERS INTENDED©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.19Do you think that the U.S. government today is working better than, worse than, or as well as the framers of theconstitution intended?1014688 Better than intendedAs well as intendedWorse than intendedDon’t know
  • 21. BY 2 TO 1, AMERICANS PREFER DIVIDEDGOVERNMENT©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.20Which of the following is closest to your view?The governmentworks best when thePresidency andCongress arecontrolled by thesame party – it’seasier to get thingsdone.The governmentworks best when thePresidency andCongress arecontrolled bydifferent parties –otherwise one groupgets too much power27 23 50Don’t know44% of Democrats prefer one-party controlling both branches72% of Republicans preferdifferent parties
  • 22. AMERICANS WOULD LIKE TO SEE MORE BI-PARTISANSHIP AND COLLABORATION©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.21Do you think there is too much or too little collaboration between political parties?11581517The right amountToo littleToo muchDont know
  • 23. MAJORITY SAY ALL BRANCHES OF GOVERNMENTSHOULD BE EQUAL©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.22Thinking of the three branches of government, which branch do you feel should have the most power?5416 12 8They should all be equal
  • 24. LEGISLATIVE BRANCH IS PERCEIVED TO HAVEBIGGEST IMPACT ON DAILY LIFE• Across all subgroups, a plurality of Americans say that Congress has thebiggest impact on their daily lives, while close to 1 in 5 say they don’t know.©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.23Which branch of the government has the largest impact on your daily life?14551417Don’t know
  • 25. WHAT AMERICANS ARE OPEN TO CHANGINGTo fix the current governmental system, Americans are open to some changes inthe Constitution, particularly in the judicial branch.©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.24Americans areopen to electingthe Presidentthrough a directvote and imposinga mandatoryretirement age, butdo not want tochange citizenshiprequirements.Americans areopen to electingthe Presidentthrough a directvote and imposinga mandatoryretirement age, butdo not want tochange citizenshiprequirements.Americans areopen to extendingterm lengths, butwill not changeage requirementsor impose amandatoryretirement age.Americans areopen to extendingterm lengths, butwill not changeage requirementsor impose amandatoryretirement age.Americans wouldlike to electSupreme CourtJustices directly,impose amandatoryretirement age,and limit theamount of timethat justices canserve.Americans wouldlike to electSupreme CourtJustices directly,impose amandatoryretirement age,and limit theamount of timethat justices canserve.Americans areopen to grantingequalrepresentation tothe District ofColumbia and togranting stateswith largerpopulations MORErepresentation inthe U.S. Senate.Americans areopen to grantingequalrepresentation tothe District ofColumbia and togranting stateswith largerpopulations MORErepresentation inthe U.S. Senate.The ExecutiveBranchThe LegislativeBranchThe JudicialBranchStateRepresentation
  • 26. AMERICANS ARE SOMEWHAT OPEN TOCHANGES IN THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH143850 60 6383717451 42 31 2611 22©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.25Open to Changing Not Open to ChangingNot Open to ChangingAbolish theelectoralcollege*Impose aretirement agefor thePresidentAllow thePresident toserve a 3rd non-consecutiveterm*Allow thePresident toserve a 3rdconsecutiveterm*Update to onesix-year term forthe President*Update the agerequirement forthe PresidentUpdate thePresident’scitizenshiprequirementsChange thecurrentsystemMaintainthe currentsystem*Re-field data collected between June 30-July 5, 2010
  • 27. AMERICANS ARE OPEN TO SOME CHANGESFOR THE LEGISLATIVE BRANCH2335 4580 7966534014 16©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.26Open to Changing Not Open to ChangingNot Open to ChangingImpose a retirementage for members ofCongressDo away with thefilibuster*Extend House termlengths to fouryears*Update agerequirement forSenatorsUpdate agerequirement formembers of theHouseChange thecurrentsystemMaintainthe currentsystem*Re-field data collected between June 30-July 5, 2010
  • 28. AMERICANS ARE MOST OPEN TO CHANGINGTHE JUDICIAL BRANCH23 263469 6651©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.27Open to ChangingChange thecurrentsystemMaintainthe currentsystemImpose a mandatoryretirement age forjustices*Impose term limits onjustices*Elect justices rather thanappoint them*Re-field data collected between June 30-July 5, 2010
  • 29. MAJORITY SAYS JUSTICES SHOULD BEELECTED• Men are split on this issue while women strongly favor electing judges overhaving them appointed.©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.28Do you believe that Supreme Court justices should be...?*AllGender Region Political Affiliation IncomeM F NE MW S W D R I <$75k >$75kElected 51 42 60 44 46 59 50 55 54 45 55 41Appointed 34 41 27 33 36 32 36 38 32 36 28 50Don’t know 15 17 13 24 18 9 14 7 14 18 17 8513415ElectedAppointedDon’t know*Re-field data collected between June 30-July 5, 2010
  • 30. AMERICANS ARE OPEN TO MAKING CHANGESIN THE SYSTEM OF REPRESENTATION3050 5649 40 30©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.29Open to ChangingAllow DC equalrepresentation inCongressStates with a larger pop.should have morerepresentation in the U.S.SenateGive 4 Senate seats tobig states, 3 to medium-sized states and 2 tosmall statesChange thecurrentsystemMaintainthe currentsystemNot Open toChangingNot Open toChanging
  • 31. AMERICANS SUPPORT CONSTITUTIONALCHANGES BY POPULAR REFERENDA• Democrats are more likely than Republicans to favor utilizing popular referendato amend the Constitution.©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.30Would you favor or oppose being able to change the Constitution by popular referenda, where citizens can propose changesand then the entire country would vote on the issue by popular vote?AllGender Region Political Affiliation IncomeM F NE MW S W D R I <$75k >$75kTotal Favor 49 49 50 54 55 46 45 58 47 47 54 40Strongly favor 22 24 21 33 31 22 6 22 22 24 23 22Somewhat favor 27 25 29 21 24 24 39 36 25 23 31 18Total Oppose 41 48 35 35 39 44 45 35 42 48 39 50Somewhat oppose 16 17 15 15 12 22 12 15 12 20 18 12Strongly oppose 25 31 20 20 27 22 33 20 30 28 21 38Don’t know 9 2 15 11 6 10 9 7 10 6 8 11242291625Strongly favorSomewhat favorDon’t knowSomewhat opposeStrongly oppose4941
  • 32. ROADMAP OF CONSTITUTIONAL CHANGESAmericans are open to making at least a fewchanges to all branches of government©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.31Least willingto changeMost willingto changeExtend houseterms to fouryears (40%)*DC should haverepresentation(49%)Allow President toserve a 3rd non-consecutive term(42%)*Mandatoryretirement age forthe President(51%)Mandatoryretirement age forjustices (69%)*Abolish theelectoral college(74%)*Limit justices’term in office(66%)*Mandatoryretirement age forthe Congress(66%)Do away with thefilibuster (53%)*Supreme CourtJustices shouldbe elected (51%)*Re-field data collected between June 30-July 5, 2010States with alarger pop.should have morereps (40%)
  • 33. IN SUM, FOUR CLEAR TRENDS TO WATCH©PENN, SCHO EN & BERLAND ASSO CIAT ES, LLC.32The American people are solidly behind the basicprinciples of the ConstitutionThe American people are solidly behind the basicprinciples of the ConstitutionBut they are divided on its interpretationBut they are divided on its interpretationAre deeply frustrated with its currentimplementationAre deeply frustrated with its currentimplementationAnd want changes that give the people morepowerAnd want changes that give the people morepower1234

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