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CBS News/New York Times Monthly Poll #1, May 2003

Resource Type
Dataset : survey data
  • CBS News
  • The New York Times
Other Title
  • Version 2 (Subtitle)
Collective Title
  • CBS News/New York Times Poll Series
Publication Date
Free Keywords
Bush Administration (George W., 2001-2009); Bush, George W.; federal budget deficit; health care reform; Hussein, Saddam; Iraq War; military intervention; national economy; personal finances; political parties; presidency; presidential performance; public opinion; SARS; tax cuts; terrorist attacks
  • Abstract

    This poll conducted, May 9-12, 2003, is part of a continuing series of monthly polls that solicit opinions on political and social issues. Respondents were asked to give their opinions of President George W. Bush and his overall job performance, as well as his handling of military action against Iraq, foreign policy issues, and the economy. Views were elicited concerning whether George Bush exhibited strong leadership qualities, whether he could be categorized as more of a liberal, moderate, or conservative, whether he cared about people like the respondent, whether he made the right decisions about the economy, the degree to which the condition of the economy was due to his economic decisions, whether his policies favored the rich, the middle class, or the poor or if everyone was treated equally according to his economic policies, the amount of influence business had on his policies, the amount of influence the religious right had on his policies, the legitimacy of Bush's 2000 presidential election victory, and the appropriateness of his landing on an aircraft carrier in a fighter jet to deliver a speech. Respondents were asked about the most important issue facing the United States, the likelihood of a major terrorist attack on the United States, who was winning the war against terrorism, the national economy and whether it was improving, getting worse, or staying the same, whether the economy was better or worse than two years ago, whether the respondent's financial situation was better or worse than two years ago, how concerned the respondent was that a member of their family would lose his or her job in the next year, and the state of relations between the United States and European countries compared to two years ago. Respondents were also asked to assess the degree of progress made by the Bush administration on improving the economy, creating new jobs, reducing prescription costs, improving public schools, ensuring Social Security, and developing a plan to protect the United States from terrorism. Specific questions concerning the economy addressed the seriousness of the state budget problems, whether cutting taxes or reducing the federal deficit would have a greater positive effect on the economy, the effect of the 2001 tax cuts on the economy, the respondent's knowledge of the current tax cut proposal, and the probable effects of a tax cut on the economy. Respondents were asked for their opinions of the Democratic and Republican parties, whether each party had a clear plan for the future, whether respondents were going to vote Democratic or Republican in the 2004 presidential election, if they could name any of the Democratic presidential candidates, and regardless of respondents' voting history, their opinions on which party was more likely to foster a strong economy, strengthen military defenses, create new jobs, make medication more affordable for the elderly, improve public education, improve the health care system, institute a fair tax system, and protect the environment. Respondents were polled on whether the health care system needed to have slight improvements, fundamental changes, or a complete overhaul, whether it was more important to cut taxes or to ensure that every resident had access to health care, how knowledgeable they were about Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and how it might affect their family, whether children and teenagers were more overweight than when the respondent was young, the reasons for the increase in overweight children, whether their children ate more, less, or the same amount of fast food as they did at that age, and whether the increased numbers of overweight children and teenagers constituted a major health problem. Specific questions addressed military action in Iraq. Respondents were queried on their knowledge of business contracts to rebuild Iraq, the likelihoodthat those contracts would go to the most qualified business without regard to political support or affiliation, whether the war was worth the costs if Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was not found, whether Hussein was personally involved in the September 11, 2001, attacks, whether the war was worth the costs if weapons of mass destruction were not found in Iraq, whether the war against Iraq was part of the war against terrorism and if it was, whether it was a minor or major part, whether the Bush administration accurately estimated the number of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and whether the Bush administration overexaggerated the number of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq to build support for the war. Other questions focused on whether the United States should pay for the cost of rebuilding Iraq, whether the United States or the United Nations should lead the establishment of a new government in Iraq, whether the United States or the United Nations should lead the restoration of order and basic services in Iraq, and whether the United States should have enlisted the help of the United Nations to manage the current situation in Iraq. Background variables include age, sex, ethnicity, 2002 household income, education, religious orientation, marital status, political orientation, political ideology, voter status, whether the respondent voted in the 2000 United States presidential election, if the respondent was prevented from voting, and if the respondent voted, for whom they voted (Democrat Al Gore, Republican George W. Bush, Reform Party candidate Pat Buchanan, or Green Party candidate Ralph Nader).
  • Methods

    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..
  • Table of Contents


    • DS1: Dataset
Temporal Coverage
  • Time period: 2003-05
  • 2003-05-09 / 2003-05-12
    Collection date: 2003-05-09--2003-05-12
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
Adult population of the United States aged 18 and over having a telephone at home.
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. 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).
Collection Mode
  • This collection has not been processed by ICPSR staff. ICPSR is distributing the data and documentation for this collection in essentially the same form in which they were received. When appropriate, documentation has been converted to Portable Document Format (PDF), data files have been converted to non-platform-specific formats, and variables have been recoded to ensure respondents' anonymity.

    The ASCII data file may have been replaced if the previous version was formatted with multiple records per case. A frequency file, which contains the authoritative column locations, has been added to the collection.

2009-04-29 As part of an automated retrofit of some studies in the holdings, ICPSR updated the frequency file for this collection to include the original question text.2009-04-22 As part of an automated retrofit of some studies in the holdings, ICPSR created the full data product suite for this collection. Note that the ASCII data file may have been replaced if the previous version was formatted with multiple records per case. A frequency file, which contains the authoritative column locations, has also been added.
This version of the study is no longer available on the web. If you need to acquire this version of the data, you have to contact ICPSR User Support (
Alternative Identifiers
  • 3825 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR03825.v3
  • Is new version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR03825.v1

Update Metadata: 2015-08-05 | Issue Number: 3 | Registration Date: 2015-06-30

CBS News; The New York Times (2003): CBS News/New York Times Monthly Poll #1, May 2003. Version 2. CBS News/New York Times Poll Series. Version: v2. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.