What Most People Want in a President

If the national popular vote elected the president, here are the positions candidates would confront in the electorate (Source):

The Economy

  • 82 percent of Americans think wealthy people have too much power and influence in Washington.

  • 69 percent think large businesses have too much power and influence in Washington.

  • 78 percent of likely voters support stronger rules and enforcement on the financial industry.


  • 82 percent of Americans think economic inequality is a “very big” (48 percent) or “moderately big” (34 percent) problem.

  • 72 percent of Americans say it is “extremely” or “very” important, and 23 percent say it is “somewhat important,” to reduce poverty.

Money in Politics

  • 96 percent of Americans—including 96 percent of Republicans—believe money in politics is to blame for the dysfunction of the U.S. political system.

  • 84 percent of Americans—including 80 percent of Republicans—believe money has too much influence in politics.

  • 78 percent of Americans say we need sweeping new laws to reduce the influence of money in politics.

  • 73 percent of registered voters have an unfavorable opinion of the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision.


  • 80 percent of Americans think some corporations don’t pay their fair share of taxes.

  • 78 percent think some wealthy people don’t pay their fair share of taxes.

  • 76 percent believe the wealthiest Americans should pay higher taxes.

  • 87 percent of Americans say it is critical to preserve Social Security, even if it means increasing Social Security taxes paid by wealthy Americans.

  • 67 percent of Americans support lifting the cap to require higher-income workers to pay Social Security taxes on all of their wages.

Minimum Wage

  • 66 percent of Americans favor raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.

  • 63 percent of registered voters think the minimum wage should be adjusted each year by the rate of inflation.

Workers’ Rights

  • 74 percent of registered voters—including 71 percent of Republicans—support requiring employers to offer paid parental and medical leave.

  • 78 percent of likely voters favor establishing a national fund that offers all workers 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave.

Health Care

  • 64 percent of registered voters favor their state accepting the Obamacare plan for expanding Medicaid in their state.


  • 63 percent of registered voters—including 47 percent of Republicans—of Americans favor making four-year public colleges and universities tuition-free.

 Climate Change and the Environment

  • 76 percent of voters are “very concerned” or “somewhat concerned” about climate change.

  • 68 percent of voters think it is possible to protect the environment and protect jobs.

  • 72 percent of voters think it is a “bad idea” to cut funding for scientific research on the environment and climate change.

 Gun Safety

  • 84 percent of Americans support requiring background checks for all gun buyers.

  • 77 percent of gun owners support requiring background checks for all gun buyers.


  • 68 percent of Americans—including 48 percent of Republicans—believe the country’s openness to people from around the world “is essential to who we are as a nation.” Just 29 percent say that “if America is too open to people from all over the world, we risk losing our identity as a nation.”

  • 65 percent of Americans—including 42 percent of Republicans—say immigrants strengthen the country “because of their hard work and talents.” Just 26 percent say immigrants are a burden “because they take our jobs, housing and health care.”

  • 64 percent of Americans think an increasing number of people from different races, ethnic groups, and nationalities makes the country a better place to live. Only 5 percent say it makes the United States a worse place to live, and 29 percent say it makes no difference.

  • 76 percent of registered voters—including 69 percent of Republicans—support allowing undocumented immigrants brought to the country as children (Dreamers) to stay in the country. 58 percent think Dreamers should be allowed to stay and become citizens if they meet certain requirements. Another 18 percent think they should be allowed to stay and become legal residents, but not citizens. Only 15 percent think they should be removed or deported from the country.

Abortion and Women’s Health

  • 68 percent of Americans—including 54 percent of Republicans—support the requirement for private health insurance plans to cover the full cost of birth control.

Same-Sex Marriage

  • 62 percent of Americans—including 70 percent of independents and 40 percent of Republicans—support same-sex marriage.

  • 74 percent of millennials (born after 1981) support same-sex marriage.