The typical Arkansan 

The picture of a typical Arkansan that emerges from the University of Arkansas's 14th annual Arkansas Poll of 800 randomly selected adult residents could be called Mr. (or Ms.) No. That is, no to Obama, no to gay marriage, no to in-state tuition for undocumented teen-agers, no to new federal dollars to expand Medicaid and no to legalizing medical marijuana. The most resounding no (60 percent): in-state tuition for high school graduates brought by their undocumented parents to Arkansas as children. Our typical Arkansan is more conservative than he was in 2011. Still, Mr. or Ms. No is likely to approve of Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe, by a wide margin, and feels he's in the same or even better position financially this year than he was last year.

Here's a look at some of the results the poll found:

The issues

Health care is more important to Arkansans than it was last year.

The most important issue facing Arkansas today in 2012 is, like 2011, the economy, but while 70 percent put the economy at the top last year, only 48 percent did this year.

The 2nd most important issue in 2012: Health care, at 15 percent of the votes. That's considerably higher than 2011, when it was 3 percent and third place to education's second place.

The 3rd, 4th and 5th most important issues in 2012: Education (12 percent in 2012, 4 percent in 2011); drugs (11 percent in 2012, 3 percent in 2011); immigration (6 percent in 2012, 2 percent in 2011) and taxes (5 percent in 2012, 3 percent in 2011).

Approval of public figures

Democrats hold their own.

Gov. Mike Beebe lost a percentage point from 2011 to stand at 72 percent approval in 2012. Sen. John Boozman gained 2 percentage points from 2011 to stand at 42 percent approval. Sen. Mark Pryor gained 5 percentage points from 2011 to stand at 53 percent approval.

For president

58 percent surveyed like Republican Mitt Romney, 31 percent like Barack Obama and 11 percent either don't know or like another candidate.

Ballot issues

Half-cent tax for roads, yes: 53 percent say yes, 42 percent no, 5 percent say don't know or decline to answer.

Medical marijuana, no: 53 percent say no, 43 percent say yes, 5 percent say don't know or decline to answer.


Keep it the same, turn down federal funds to expand: 47 percent.

Expand Medicaid: 41 percent.

Declined to answer or didn't know: 12 percent.

Gay marriage

Arkansas is not trending with the rest of the country, which according to most polls show 51 percent to 54 percent approval. In Arkansas, proponents have lost ground since last year.

Gay marriage should be allowed: 15 percent in 2005, 22 percent in 2011, 16 percent in 2012.

Gay civil unions should be allowed: 22 percent in 2005, 22 percent in 2011, 20 percent in 2012.

No legal recognition for same-sex couples: 54 percent in 2005, 51 percent in 2011, 57 percent in 2012.

Party ideology, change over a decade

Fewer moderates, liberals and Democrats, more Republicans and conservatives.

Republican: 30 percent in 2002, 32 percent in 2012.

Democrat: 35 percent in 2002, 30 percent in 2012.

Liberal: 15 percent in 2002, 12 percent in 2012.

Moderate: 39 percent in 2002, 32 percent in 2012.

Conservative: 41 percent in 2002, 51 percent in 2012.



Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Inquizator: Holt Condren

    Holt Condren is an explorer and entrepreneur based in Maumelle, the founder of Ink Custom Tees and the author of "Surf the Woods: The Ordinary Man's Trail Map to the Extraordinary Life." He's also featured in a new documentary, "Finding Noah," which follows a team of archeologists and theologians to Mount Ararat, in Turkey, on a search for Noah's Ark. The film will premiere with a multicity one-night-only screening at 7 p.m. Oct. 8.
    • Oct 1, 2015
  • The devil is in the details at the Arkansas state Capitol

    The proposed Ten Commandments monument vs. the Satanic Temple's proposed Baphomet statue.
    • Aug 17, 2016

Most Shared

Latest in The Big Picture

  • Inconsequential News Quiz: Midway Coronary Edition

    Play in the Hall of Industry using a free pen from the Arkansas Rice Board!
    • Oct 20, 2016
  • Instagram famous

    A survey of people from Arkansas who're famous only on Instagram.
    • Oct 6, 2016
  • Truck On

    Remember the days before food trucks were ubiquitous in Little Rock? Before they were fixtures at every outdoor festival and event and had regular spots where they stopped throughout town?
    • Sep 22, 2016
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

Five Fun Fall Activities

Five Fun Fall Activities

Autumn temps are perfect for outdoor activities

Event Calendar

« »


2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31  

Most Recent Comments


© 2016 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation