Massachusetts Message to DNC: 'Bring It On'

7/19/2004

BOSTON, MA – With the Democratic National Convention (July 26-29) only one week away, a majority of Massachusetts’ voters support having this historical political event in their own backyard, according to an exclusive 7NEWS-Suffiolk University poll released today.

When asked, “do you think that having the convention in Boston is a good idea.” 56% of statewide likely voters said “yes,” 36% said “no,” and 9% were undecided.

“Massachusetts is delighted to host this political homecoming celebration for one of its own, Senator John Kerry,” said David Paleologos, Director of the Political Research Center at Suffolk University. “With the DNC on its doorstep, Massachusetts’ voters are inviting the world with open arms to Boston, the Bay State’s capital city.”

According to the latest 7NEWS-Suffolk University survey, the success or failure of the convention rests squarely on the shoulders of Boston Mayor Tom Menino. When respondents were asked, “which politician would you blame most if the convention was a failure,” 27% named Menino, followed by Kerry with 11%. When asked, “which politician would you credit if the convention was a success,” 32% selected Menino, and 18% chose Kerry.

“It’s hero or zero time for Tom Menino,” stated Paleologos. “Voters recognize that he is the one politician closest to the day-to-day operations of the convention, and the spotlight will be shining on him either way.”

Nearly two-thirds of likely Massachusetts’ voters (65%) said that the Boston Police should not protest during the convention, while 28% supported a convention protest. Overall, respondents were split on what the Boston Police should receive in their contract negotiations. When asked, “if the police protest during the convention, what do you think they should get,” 24% said, “they should get what they’re asking for,” 20% said, “they should get less,” 22% said, “no difference,” 10% said, “other,” and 24% said they were, “undecided.”

In other key findings from the 7NEWS-Suffolk University poll, Senator John Kerry, as expected, easily defeated President George Bush, 59% to 30%, with independent candidate Ralph

Nader getting 2%, while 9% of likely voters were undecided. Yet, when asked, “who do you expect the next President to be come November,” just 49% of respondents said, “Kerry,” while 31% indicated, “Bush,” and 20% were “undecided.”

Although Kerry’s running mate, North Carolina Senator John Edwards, was extremely popular (67% favorable, 18% unfavorable), voters were split on his readiness to be President. When asked, “is John Edwards ready to be President,” 45% of respondents said, “yes,” and 42% said, “no.”

“Voters are less inclined to believe that John Edwards is ready to be President at this time,” said Paleologos. “This is especially problematic among independent voters, where 42% said, “yes,” and 46% said, “no,” making his readiness to be President a potentially cutting issue outside of Massachusetts.”

In a related question, respondents said that John Kerry flip-flops on issues. A total of 60% of likely voters thought that Kerry does indeed flip-flop on issues, while 31% indicated that he does not. Said Paleologos, “While voters said that John Kerry flip-flops, they also said that they like him and they will vote for him.”

Finally, Mitt Romney is expected to run for President in the future by a majority of Massachusetts’ voters. When asked, “ do you expect, in the future, that Mitt Romney will run for President,” 53% said, “yes,” 31% said, “no,” and 17% were “undecided.”

The 7NEWS-Suffolk University poll was conducted from July 15-18, 2004. The margin of error is +/- 4.9% at a 95% level of confidence. All 400 Massachusetts respondents indicated they were likely voters who would be casting a ballot for President in the final election.

Suffolk University is scheduled to release highlights of this survey in chart form on Tuesday, July 20, 2004. Cross-tabulation data totaling 96 pages and marginals will be released on Monday, July 19, 2004 and posted on the Suffolk website (www.suffolk.edu). For more information, please contact Suffolk adjunct professor David Paleologos at 781-290-9310.

7NBC (WHDH-TV) is Boston’s NBC Network affiliate, a Sunbeam Broadcasting station, and “the News Station” delivering the market’s leading source for breaking news, special reports, features and critical information: 7NEWS!

Suffolk University, located on Boston’s historic Beacon Hill, with campuses in Madrid, Spain and Dakar, Senegal (Africa), is a comprehensive global institution distinguished by its teaching and the intellectual contributions of its faculty. Suffolk offers a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs in more than 70 areas of study. Its mission is to provide quality education at a reasonable cost for students of all ages and backgrounds, with strong emphasis on diversity. Suffolk has a combined enrollment of more than 7,500 full-time and part-time students at its Law School, College of Arts and Sciences and Sawyer School of Management.

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