Escalating violence between Israel and Gaza militants is now involving southern Lebanon as well. We gauge American views of the conflict with Frank Newport, editor in chief of Gallup Poll.
Americans overall are pessimistic that there will ever be peace, with 33 percent saying there be a time when Israel and the Arab nations settle their differences and live in peace — about as negative as we’ve ever seen. Sixty-two percent of Americans side with the Israelis, and 18 percent side with the Palestinians. But overall the American public considers the Arab-Israeli conflict as nowhere near as important as the potential for Iran to gain nuclear weapons.
President Obama traveled to Texas this week to meet with Texas Gov. Rick Perry amid controversy surrounding immigration issues. But immigration is not seen by most Americans as the most important issue facing the country. Further, Perry had a very negative image among Americans when he was running for president, but his image now nationally is slightly more positive than negative, whereas Omaba has a more negative image on a relative basis.
Still talking about politics, there are two characteristics that distinguish today’s young people: They are disengaged from the political process, and, to the degree that they are engaged, they tilt Democratic. Baby Boomers up to age 65 also lean Democratic. Older Americans tilt strongly Republicans. Having an older person in your corner as a Republican is more important than having a younger person in your pocket as a Democrat, sayd Newport.
And an interesting insight into beauty and age: At what age are Americans most comfortable with their physical appearance, and when are they the most worried about how they look? It turns out that Americans feel decreasingly good about their apearance until their 50s, at which point, as they age into their 60s and beyond, they begin to feel realtively better about their appearance. Perhaps they’re giving up or just finding more important things to concentrate on.