LSU’s Public Policy Research Lab Releases 2014 Election Report

09/30/2014 10:06 AM

BATON ROUGE – Republican voters in Louisiana are following the election more closely and are more committed to casting ballots than Democratic voters, according to a recent survey of Louisiana voters by LSU’s Public Policy Research Lab, or PPRL. Additionally, the survey showed that Republicans in the state are 10 percent more likely than Democrats to say they are “absolutely certain” to vote this fall.

“Right now, Republicans are especially galvanized for the election,” said Michael Henderson, research director of PPRL.

The 2014 Election Report shows that party control of Congress is an important motivating factor for both Democrats and Republicans in this election. Seventy-one percent of Republicans cited determining which party leads Congress as a factor in their decisions, along with 66 percent of Democrats.

In general, midterm elections produce a smaller voter turnout than presidential elections. However, Louisiana may not experience this decrease like the rest of the nation – in large part because of the tight U.S. Senate race for the seat of longtime Democrat Mary Landrieu.

“Turnout will certainly be lower than in 2012, but the drop this year may be smaller in Louisiana compared to other parts of the country as campaigns work to mobilize voters here for the very competitive U.S. Senate race,” said Henderson.

Republicans in Louisiana are far more likely than Democrats to say that their opinion of President Obama will matter for their votes, with two-thirds of Republican voters – 67 percent – pointing to the President as a factor in voting.

“President Obama remains very unpopular among Republicans in Louisiana, who are especially likely to vote this fall,” said Henderson. “They seem to be jumping at the chance to go out and cast a vote against the party of the president.”

The Democrats’ best chance to narrow the turnout gap with Republicans could come out of the Baton Rouge area, where black Democrats are especially mobilized for the upcoming election.      

A large number of respondents, as expected, cited the economy and foreign policy at the top of their lists of concerns – with 83 percent placing the economy on top of their list and 78 percent foreign affairs/national security as their top issue. Other important issues that voters are considering are the Affordable Care Act at 73 percent the federal budget deficit at 71 percent, as well as immigration.

The survey also shows just more than a third of registered voters in Louisiana can correctly identify the party of their current representative in the U.S. House. For additional information, or a copy of the report, contact LSU University Relations or Henderson at


About the 2014 Election Report
The results in this report are based on interviews among a sample of 1,021 adults living in Louisiana, including 944 self-identified registered voters. The overall margin of error for the weighted sample of registered voters is plus/minus 4.3 percentage points.

About the Public Policy Research Lab
The Public Policy Research Lab is a joint effort between the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs at LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication and the LSU College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

PPRL has 52 computer-assisted telephone interviewing workstations, mail survey and web survey capability in addition to analytical services. The lab is dedicated to meeting the unique goals and objectives of each project by working closely with those seeking data, research expertise and analysis. The lab's projects benefit from the multiple disciplines and intellectual assets at LSU. One of the lab’s core projects is the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs’ annual Louisiana Survey, a longitudinal study of advancements and regressions of citizen views regarding state services and contemporary issues. Clients include the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals; Louisiana Department of Labor; Louisiana Division of Administration; Baton Rouge Area Foundation; and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

For more information on PPRL, visit

Billy  Gomila 
LSU Media Relations

Posted on Tuesday, September 30, 2014