Most Americans Believe Election Laws are Necessary for Fair Elections

Ipsos Poll on behalf of the Center for Public Integrity

Most Americans Believe Election Laws are Necessary for Fair Elections

The author(s)

  • Chris Jackson Vice President, US, Public Affairs
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Washington, DC — Only half of Americans believe our elections are fair and open (50%), with an overwhelming majority in favor of federal election laws. Three quarters (76%) think interest groups should follow the same campaign or election laws as political candidates, with 79% believing federal election laws are necessary to ensure fair elections. Support for payment disclosure for political TV and online ads is also high, with 85% believing political TV ads should be required to say who paid for the ad and 84% believing the same about political ads online. Despite these strong views, just 29% of Americans are familiar with the Federal Election Commission, the independent regulatory agency that enforces campaign finance law in federal elections. 

About the Study

These are findings from an Ipsos poll conducted December 7-11, 2017 on behalf of the Center for Public Integrity. For the survey, a sample of roughly 1,005 adults from the continental U.S., Alaska and Hawaii was interviewed online in English. The sample includes 344 Democrats, 302 Republicans, and 228 Independents. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll has a credibility interval of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points for all respondents. Ipsos calculates a design effect (DEFF) for each study based on the variation of the weights, following the formula of Kish (1965). This study had a credibility interval adjusted for design effect of the following (n=1, 011, DEFF=1.5, adjusted Confidence Interval=5). The poll also has a credibility interval plus or minus 6.0 percentage points for Democrats, plus or minus 6.4 percentage points for Republicans, and plus or minus 7.4 percentage points for Independents. Post-hoc weights were made to the population characteristics on gender, age, region, race/ethnicity and income.For more information about Ipsos online polling methodology, please go here: 

For more information on this news release please contact:

Chris Jackson
Vice President, U.S.
Ipsos Public Affairs

About Ipsos Public Affairs

Ipsos Public Affairs is a non-partisan, objective, survey-based research practice made up of seasoned professionals. We conduct strategic research initiatives for a diverse number of American and international organizations, based not only on public opinion research, but elite stakeholder, corporate, and media opinion research.

Ipsos has media partnerships with the most prestigious news organizations around the world. In Canada, the U.S., UK, and internationally, Ipsos Public Affairs is the media polling supplier to Reuters News, the world's leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals. Ipsos Public Affairs is a member of the Ipsos Group, a leading global survey-based market research company. We provide boutique-style customer service and work closely with our clients, while also undertaking global research.

About Ipsos

Ipsos is an independent market research company controlled and managed by research professionals. Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has grown into a worldwide research group with a strong presence in all key markets. Ipsos ranks third in the global research industry.

With offices in 88 countries, Ipsos delivers insightful expertise across five research specializations: brand, advertising and media, customer loyalty, marketing, public affairs research, and survey management.

Ipsos researchers assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media and they measure public opinion around the globe.

Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of €1,785.3 million ($1,981 million) in 2015.


The author(s)

  • Chris Jackson Vice President, US, Public Affairs

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