The Gallup Poll: Public Opinion, 1935-1971


The information in this poll covers a whole range of political issues throughout 1936. The responses are broken down to show numbers based on such criteria as region, political affiliation, religion, gender, and other "special groups." Under the November 2 results, the results of the poll concerning the presidential election are compared with the Literary Digest final poll. Gallup's forecast that Roosevelt would win re-election proved to be correct.



As you read the document, reflect on the following questions:

  • Examine the poll data related to support for the New Deal and Civilian Conservation Corps on pages 27 and 29. Based on the data, would you say there was public support for the New Deal in mid-1936?
  • Examine the poll data on page 29 related to the impact of Coughlin and Townsend endorsements on voting choices. What would you conclude about Coughlin's impact on voter choices based on the data? How might a Coughlin endorsement help a Republican candidate?
  • Trace the poll data on Presidential Trial Heats throughout the document. How does it change over time?
  • How did the Literary Digest polling methods differ from those of the Gallup Institute for Public Opinion polling methods as described on page 39? Why, in the end, might the Gallup methods have been more accurate?