CBS News/New York Times Monthly Poll #1, October 2008 (ICPSR 26822)

Version Date: Feb 18, 2010 View help for published

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CBS News; The New York Times


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This poll, fielded October 10-13, 2008, is a part of a continuing series of monthly surveys that solicit public opinion on the presidency and on a range of other political and social issues. This poll interviewed 1,070 adults nationwide, including 972 registered voters, about the way George W. Bush was handling the presidency and the economy, the condition of the national economy, and whether the country was moving in the right direction. Registered voters were asked how much attention they were paying to the 2008 presidential campaign, whether they had voted in a presidential primary or caucus that year, the likelihood that they would vote in the general election, and for whom they would vote if the general election were held that day. Views were sought on presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain, vice-presidential candidates Joe Biden and Sarah Palin, the Democratic and Republican parties, and members of the United States Congress. A series of questions asked whether their opinions of the presidential candidates had changed in the past few weeks and whether anything about the candidates' background bothered them, including Obama's alleged association with Bill Ayers, a former member of the radical domestic group called the Weathermen, and McCain's involvement as one of the five senators known as the Keating Five in the savings and loan controversy in the late 1980s and early 1990s. All respondents were polled on whether they had watched the second presidential debate held October 7, 2008, who they thought won, and the likelihood that they would watch the next presidential debate on October 15, 2008. Additional topics addressed feelings about the economic bailout plan, concerns about job loss in the household, and whether their household income was sufficient to pay their bills. Those with a mortgage on their home were asked how concerned they were about not being able to pay it. Demographic variables include sex, age, race, education level, marital status, household income, perceived social class, political party affiliation, political philosophy, voter registration status and participation history, religious preference, frequency of religious attendance, and whether respondents considered themselves to be a born-again Christian, and whether a child under 18 was living in the household.

CBS News, and The New York Times. CBS News/New York Times Monthly Poll #1, October 2008. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2010-02-18.

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Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research
2008-10-10 -- 2008-10-13

The data available for download are not weighted and users will need to weight the data prior to analysis.

The CASEID variable was reformatted in order to make it a unique identifier.

Responses in the variable Q96 (ZIP Code) were blanked to protect respondent confidentiality.

Value labels for unknown codes were added in variables Q40 and Q50. A truncated value label in variable EDUC was corrected.

This data collection was produced by CBS News, New York, NY.

A variation of random-digit dialing using primary sampling units (PSUs) was employed, consisting of blocks of 100 telephone numbers identical through the eighth digit and stratified by geographic region, area code, and size of place. Phone numbers were dialed from RDD samples of both standard land-lines and cell phones. Within households, respondents were selected using a method developed by Leslie Kish and modified by Charles Backstrom and Gerald Hursh (see Backstrom and Hursh, SURVEY RESEARCH. Evanston, IL: Northwestern University Press, 1963).

Persons aged 18 and over living in households with telephones in the United States.

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2018-02-15 The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented. The previous citation was:
  • CBS News, and The New York Times. CBS News/New York Times Monthly Poll #1, October 2008. ICPSR26822-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2010-02-18.

2010-02-18 ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Created variable labels and/or value labels.
  • Created online analysis version with question text.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.

The data contain weight variables that should be used in analyzing the data. According to the CBS News Web site, the data were weighted to match United States Census Bureau breakdowns on age, sex, race, education, and region of the country. The data were also adjusted for the fact that people who share a telephone with others have less chance to be contacted than people who live alone and have their own telephones, and that households with more than one telephone number have more chances to be called than households with only one telephone number.


  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions.

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