Twenty-four hours after Mitt Romney's speech "Faith in America", people are still reacting. In Utah, Dan Jones and Associates conducted a poll for Deseret News/KSL-TV. And, not unexpectedly, Utahns overwhelmingly approved of the speech. Full story aired by KSL Channel 5 and in the Deseret Morning News. And there are two Salt Lake Tribune stories, HERE and HERE, which don't address the poll itself, but focus on more reaction to the speech.
There were multiple questions. First, a combined 89 percent said he did an excellent or good job, (66 percent excellent, 23 percent good), while a mere 7 percent said fair or poor. And these numbers were even higher among respondents who identified themselves as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; 96 percent of them approved of what Romney said and 85 percent said he helped himself in the race. Approximately three-quarters of the respondents identified themselves as LDS.
When asked what effect Romney's speech had on his campaign, 78 percent believe it helped, 4 percent said it hurt, and 9 percent said it made no difference.
When asked about perceptions people around the country have about the LDS Church, 25 percent said those perceptions are fair, 62 percent said unfair, and 13 percent did not know. "When I ask, ‘What have you heard about the Mormons?' polygamy is number one," Jones said.
Jones mentioned a national poll in which only 50 percent of respondents know Romney is LDS. "You'd be surprised how many people never heard of Mr. Romney, and so the timing of the talk might have been late. But as late as it was, it accomplished what they would like for it to do at the time," he said.
And finally, when asked if religion should be a factor in this campaign, 16 percent said it should, and a huge 82 percent said it should not. "It's gonna be about race, religion, redistricting and gender; and so, let's see how far America's come," Jones said.
There are now less then 30 days until the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary. The question now is: Will the speech translate into votes? Romney has a comfortable lead in New Hampshire, but it's almost a dead heat between him and Huckabee in Iowa.
Click HERE to see the results of all recent Presidential polls.
A total of 320 people reponded to the survey conducted Thursday evening (December 6th). The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 5.5 percent.