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  Virginia: Economy Top Issue for Election 2005

Survey of 500 Likely Voters

September 14, 2005

Election 2005

Most Important Issue

Economy 28%
Health Care 15%
Education 14%
Taxes 11%
Transportation 8%
Immigration 7%
Same Sex Marriage 6%
Gun Ownership Laws 5%
Abortion 4%
Not Sure 3%



September 16, 2005--Twenty-eight percent (28%) of Virginia voters say that the economy is the most important issue in the race to succeed Mark Warner as Governor.

Republican Jerry Kilgore holds a narrow three-point lead over Democrat Tim Kaine in that campaign. The survey margin of sampling error is +/- 4.5 percentage points.

Other issues on the minds of many voters include health care (15%), Education (14%), and taxes (11%).

Kilgore leads among voters who name Taxes, Immigration, Gun Ownership Laws, and Same-Sex Marriage as the most important issue.

Kaine holds the edge among those who name Education and Health Care as the top issue.

Voters who name the Economy, Transportation, and Abortion, are fairly evenly divided between Kilgore and Kaine.

Forty-six percent (46%) of voters say last year's $1.5 billion tax increase was good for the state. Those voters support Kaine by a 2-to-1 margin. Kaine supported the tax hike, two-thirds of which was used for education.

Thirty-eight percent (38%) say the tax increase was bad for the state. They support Kilgore by a nearly 2-to-1 margin. Kilgore opposed the tax increase, but has said he won't overturn it.

The 16% who aren't sure about the tax increase tend to favor Kilgore as well.


Fifty-nine percent (59%) say that voter approval should be required for "all tax increases in the state of Virginia." Thirty-five percent (35%) disagree.

Just 18% of voters believe that taxpayer dollars should be used to fund day laborer shelters that can be used by both legal immigrants and illegal aliens to assemble and find work. Seventy-one percent (71%) of voters oppose the funding of such shelters.

Kilgore is opposed to the day laborer shelters and Kaine calls that opposition "mean-spirited."

By an 88% to 8% margin, Virginia voters also say  that illegal aliens should not be allowed to receive government benefits such as Medicaid.

Fifty-six percent (56%) of the state's voters are Pro-Choice on abortion. Thirty-eight percent (38%) are Pro-Life.

Sixty-eight percent (68%) favor the death penalty for persons convicted of murder. Twenty-two percent (22%) are opposed.

Fifty-four percent (54%) believe laws covering the sale of firearms should be made more strict. Eleven percent (11%) say the laws should be less strict while 32% don't see a need for change.

Rasmussen Reports is an electronic publishing firm specializing in the collection, publication, and distribution of public opinion polling information.

Rasmussen Reports was the nation's most accurate polling firm during the Presidential election and the only one to project both Bush and Kerry's vote total within half a percentage point of the actual outcome.

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Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports, has been an independent pollster for more than a decade.

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The telephone survey of 500 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports September 14, 2005.  The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. 39% of survey respondents were Republican, 35% Democrat, and 26% unaffiliated (see Methodology)

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