tv [untitled] March 17, 2017 1:34pm-1:48pm EDT
the national review's ideas summit in washington, d.c. taking a short break here. it will continue with a discussion on conservatism and economic class in the u.s. coming up in just a few minutes. with the confirmation hearing set for supreme court justice nominee neil gorsuch next week, c-span recently participated in a poll of whether or not cameras should be allowed in the supreme court. and we talked about that on today's "washington journal." we'll show that to you while we wait for the national review summit to continue. >> so what do you think about the u.s. supreme court? we're out with a new survey today, available on our website, at c-span.org, and joining us is robert green, the pollster for
pen, shown and berlin. let's go through the highlights, according to the survey you conducted on behalf of c-span, 90% said the supreme court decisions affect their lives and 82% saying that the supreme court appointments were an important consideration in their vote in 2016. did these numbers surprise you? >> i tell you, the only thing that surprised me was as big as the numbers are, they have gotten more intense over the eight years that we have been conducting research on these subjects. periodically for c-span. for instance, eight years ago, first time we did it, the strongly agree on the 90% was in the 30s, now it is almost 50%. to put it another way, almost 50% of americans strongly agree that the decisions have an impact on their everyday lives. the other thing that i was struck by and you see this in that 81% number you mentioned, 82% number you mentioned, it is
bipartisan. it really cuts across the parties. everybody feels strongly that the appointment -- what happened with the supreme court was an important factor in their vote. >> can you walk us through the methodology of the survey, who you polled, when it took place, and what was the margin of error? >> yes, i can, thank you. it was, first, it has been conducted very recently. these are very fresh numbers. we conducted online interviews from march 7 to march 9 last week. we conducted 1,032 interviews among likely voters. the margin of error on the survey is 3.05. the 95% confidence level, which is just another way of saying if it were possible to interview all americans and it is not, but if it were, 19 times out of 20 the results wouldn't vary more than three points from what we see here. so it is sound stuff. >> let me put another number on the screen, and for those
listening on c-span radio, 71%, that's the number of people in the survey who follow news about the president's nominee for the supreme court, neil gorsuch. and we mentioned that number because presumably we could have additional vacancies in the coming years under this administration? >> yes, yes. again, quite a large number, 71% are following the -- we had a follow-up question, it is really -- not only 71%, 7 in 10 americans are following the news in recent weeks concerning president trump's nominee. but by 3 to 1 margin people are following this nomination more closely than they have those in the past. >> so with an eye on what we presumably could expect on monday, when judge neil gorsuch will raise his right hand and swear to tell the truth as he testifies before congress, what do you think based on the people that you question they'll be
looking for next week? >> i think they'll be -- first, they'll be following closely. i think there is going to be -- there is always a lot of attention paid to potential nominees to the supreme court. i believe it will be even more -- if you would than what we have seen in the past. what we see out of the data is that the intensity, which was not inconsiderable eight years ago is greater now. >> do you think americans see a direct connection between the high court and their own personal lives? >> yeah. yes, i do. i do. i think -- certainly tell us they do. it shows up in how they vote. this is outside of the poll, it is interesting how often on c-span and just other places when you, you know, when citizens are interviewed or, you know, just in some sort of new setting how often supreme court nominees or appointments to the supreme court matter and how they look at issues.
the one thing i will say is i don't think there is -- the public has always -- this is what we look at in the survey, they would like to know a lot more about what the court is up to, and they don't really get the opportunities they like to. >> you teed up my next question perfectly, robert green. it is no secret this network since its inception 38 years ago this month has been an advocate for cameras in the court for the oral arguments there are roughly 74, 75 oral arguments that take place during the course of the judicial year and the survey said what about how americans view cameras in the court? >> fully three in four likely voter in the united states support television coverage of the oral arguments. in other words, cameras in the supreme court, cameras in the courtroom, if you would. that number is, again, a very strong majority, similar to some of the other numbers we have spoken about this morning, what is most striking about it is
over eight years, there has been a strong increase in support for cameras from 61% of all voters to 76% in this latest survey. that's pretty impressive. there is -- this has been a subject that is -- it is bubbling up from the ground, if you would. people want to -- they would like to know more. they care more than they did in the past, and they cared then. the ability to see the oral arguments is very important, i'll speak to that for a moment. the supreme court has, it seems to me, a problem which is that it is interpreted, if you would, by the media, by the president, by the congress. they never allow their work to speak for itself. televising oral arguments would let people see that they operate in a serious and constitutional manner. and that i don't think is clear at all to people.
according to the polling, i think it is something like congress. and i -- it is strange that they would let that -- the ability to let people know they're working seriously, they leave that outside of their control. >> and, of course, the final decision rests with the justices who serve on the u.s. supreme court. >> yes, as i understand it, yes. obviously. i think they have to decide to do it. they have done it in all 50 states. british do it. the canadians do it. i think it is important because otherwise people will make assumptions that are unwarranted. and particularly they make controversial decisions, it is very important that people see that they're thinking about this very seriously. >> robert green, who is a principal and pollster at penn, schoen bereland, the full survey available on our website, check it out at c-span.org. thank you very much for being with us. >> thank you.