Is the President of the United States Responsive to Public Opinion?
Through the analysis of the Obama Administration's public position taking on two controversial issues in public addresses, this paper will attempt to answer the question 'Is the President of the United States responsive towards public opinion?' The two issues that will be analyzed are same-sex marriage and marijuana legalization. The logic behind analyzing these two issues is their similarity. Both issues are a state-by-state policy with a slowly increasing public favorability measured by a ten-year trend on Gallup, and both issues are based on personal beliefs with cleanly divided opinion groups. Although controversial, President Obama has addressed both issues in major public addresses at specific points in time. I will utilize the statistics collected by Gallup to analyze public opinion trends for same-sex marriage and marijuana legalization, and determine if there is a pattern that initiates such a public address where a stance is taken by the Obama Administration.
Keene State College
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