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Marketplace Morning Report

How voters feel about the economy

Marketplace Staff Nov 9, 2016
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A subway commuter reads a newspaper featuring the U.S. election results in New York on November 9.
JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images

Donald Trump’s win last night highlighted voters’ concerns about the economy, but there has also been a lot of discussion on how a divided America showed up at the polls.

So what does exit polling data say about how voters from the two major parties feel about economic issues? Is there a divide? Yes, for the most part, according to The New York Times polling data. We take a look at the results to see what divide looks like.

Voters were divided on nearly every issue, but when it came to rating the importance of the economy, there was a pretty even split. Fifty-two percent of Democrats thought the economy was the biggest issue, compared to 42 percent of Republicans.

But there was a wide gap when it came to the actual condition of the nation’s economy. Eighty-three percent of Democrats said they think it’s in “excellent” shape, with just 16 percent of Republicans expressing the same sentiment. Meanwhile, 79 percent of Republicans thinks it’s in “poor” condition compared to 15 percent of Democrats.

That pessimistic divide extended across issues like voters’ family financial situations and what they expect for the next generation of Americans. When asked what they expect for the next generation, 59 percent of Democrats think life will improve, while 63 percent of Republicans think life will worsen.

The two sides also vastly differed on how they think trade with other countries would affect U.S. jobs. The majority of Democrats said it creates opportunities, while the majority of Republicans said that trade would take them away.

That view among the GOP reflected Trump’s opinions on how we should interact with other nations. He has spoken out against trade, suggesting that he would raise tariffs and potentially renegotiate NAFTA.

Republicans also aligned with Trump on his views toward illegal immigrants working in the U.S. Eighty-four percent said they should be deported, compared to 14 percent of Democrats.

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