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McCain Favorability Up Slightly After New Ad

Little Voter Movement

Flemington, NJ, October 22, 2008 According to the results of a new national study among 307 self-reported Democrats, Republicans and Independents, John McCain's favorability ratings increased slightly among all parties after viewing a new ad regarding his policies.

The study was conducted by HCD Research and the Muhlenberg College Institute of Public Opinion (MCIPO) during October 18-19, to obtain Americans' perceptions of a new ad by John McCain in which he outlines his plan on taxes and the economy, and energy.

The ad earned John McCain a Political Communications Impact Score (PCIS) of 15.2 and Barack Obama received a score of 3.7, resulting in a net score of 11.4 for John McCain. The scores can be compared to a mean score of 7.8 for previously tested McCain ads and 8.5 for previously tested Obama ads. To date, the total mean score for all previously tested ads is 8.1.

Favorability for Candidates Pre/Post Viewing of the Ad:

Obama / Pre / Post
All Responders / 58% / 58%
Democrats / 89% / 88%
Republicans / 20% / 19%
Independents / 69% / 66%
McCain / /
All Responders / 54% / 57%
Democrats / 25% / 28%
Republicans / 89% / 90%
Independents / 48% / 52%

"Which of the following emotions did you feel the most while viewing the video? Please select one emotion you felt most."

/ Total (n=307) / Registered Democrat (n=101) / Registered Republican (n=102) / Registered Independent (n=104)
Anger / 4% / 6% / 4% / 2%
Inspiration / 36% / 18% / 55% / 34%
Sadness / 1% / 1% / 0% / 1%
Skepticism / 36% / 59% / 16% / 33%
Confusion / 4% / 4% / 2% / 7%
Disturbing / 3% / 5% / 0% / 4%
Embarrassment / 1% / 0% / 1% / 2%
Pride / 9% / 2% / 18% / 9%
Happiness / 7% / 5% / 5% / 10%

The PCIS is a metric scoring system designed to gauge the effectiveness of political communications by generating a score for each candidate to monitor changes in voter perceptions. The PCIS score is derived from the change in voters' support and the extent that the support shifts. To view scores and results of recent studies go to:

While viewing the video, participants indicated their levels of believability by moving their mouse from left to right on a continuum. The responses were recorded in quarter-second intervals and reported in the form of curves. The participants' emotions were measured using the Ayer Emotion Battery. Participants were also asked pre- and post-viewing questions. To view believability curves and detailed results go to:

The Media Curves web site provides the media and general public with a venue to view Americans' perceptions of popular and controversial media events and advertisements.

HCD Research is a communications research company headquartered in Flemington, NJ. The company's services include traditional and web-based communications research. For additional information on HCD Research, access the company's web site at or call HCD Research at 908-788-9393. Headquartered in Allentown, Pennsylvania, MCIPO is a respected source of public opinion data on local, state and national issues. For additional information on Muhlenberg College, go to


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