Attention To News About 2012 Presidential Race: 36% Following Closely

June 01, 2012, 3:00 PM GMT+0

(Week of 5/26/2012) As summer dawns, attention to Presidential election news will hit a plateau. Summer Olympics, and just plain ol’ summertime, means attention will wander from the rat-a-tat-tat of the race. And the plateau is just not very high, with only 36% saying they are following election news closely.

Slowly, almost imperceptibly, interest will grow as the political conventions, Labor Day and the quickening of political drumbeat at all levels—that is, just the ticking of the political clock toward November 6, 2012—starts pounding more loudly.

“Likely voters” are most often defined, at least in part, by those who say they are following election news closely. Therefore, just as actual turnout ranges between 50% and 60% of eligible voters, the percentage following Election News closely, as actual voters do and others don’t, will similarly rise to the 50s and even 60s.

Interest is sure not there now. Among the groups getting a jump on close interest in the Presidential contest as of Memorial Day weekend are Republicans (43%), Independents (41%) but not Democrats (33%), and close interest is relatively high among ideological conservatives (47%) and liberals (46%) alike, but not among moderates (36%).

Economist/YouGov poll archives can be found here

Photo source: Press Association