Pew: American People Want US Leadership in Space

Pew: American People Want US Leadership in Space

A Pew Research Center poll released today shows that a majority of the American people — 58 percent — think that it is “essential” for the United States to be a world leader in space exploration.

The poll also showed that 38 percent do not think it is essential. The remaining 4 percent did not know or did not answer. In addition, 55 percent think the space shuttle program has been a good investment, while 36 percent think it has not (the remainder did not know or did not answer).

The poll asked a number of questions about how Americans view the space program and the results are broken down by political party and demographic data. Republicans and Independents believe U.S. leadership is essential more than Democrats do. Those who earn more than $75,000 and those who earn less than $30,000 think it is essential more than those who earn between those amounts, but it’s close in the latter two categories.

The poll was conducted by telephone between June 15-19, 2011 and has a sampling error of 3.5 percentage points. Except for the question about the space shuttle, the questions were about the space program in general; they did not differentiate between human and robotic missions.

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