The threat of terrorism remains high among Americans concerns, with 72% of registered voters saying the issue will be “very important” to their vote, but it has been overshadowed somewhat by concerns about the economy and energy; fully 87% of voters now say the economy will be very important to their vote this fall. The proportion citing the economy is virtually unchanged since May (88%) but it has risen by 9 points since October 2004 while the proportion citing terrorism has declined five points since then. And while terrorism, Iraq and other issues rivaled the economy in importance four years ago, the economy rates 10 points higher than any other issue this year. Energy ranks second, with 77% saying this issue will be very important. That represents a substantial increase of 23 percentage points from October 2004. Four other issues cluster just below, with 72%-73% mentioning health care, education, the war in Iraq and terrorism. Majorities also mention moral values (61% very important), the environment (59%) and immigration (52%). About half (49%) say trade policy will be very important. Read More

Russell Heimlich  is a former web developer at Pew Research Center.