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Exit Polls Show Economy Tops Voters’ Concerns

Pocketbook issues were at the top of Americans’ minds this Tuesday, with more than four in ten voters in early national exit polls citing the economy as the most important issue facing the country.

Asked to select the most important of four issues – the economy, health care, illegal immigration and foreign policy – 44 percent pointed to the nation’s economy. About a third – 34 percent – said they believe the economy is getting better, while a majority – 58 percent – said that the economy is either poor and staying the same (27 percent) or getting worse (31 percent.)

A quarter of voters cited health care as their top issue, while similar shares cited foreign policy (13 percent) and illegal immigration (14 percent).

Voters most concerned about economic issues split their vote almost equally between Democratic and Republicans, at 50 percent support and 48 percent support, respectively. Democrats had a wide edge among voters who cite health care as their top concern, winning that group 61 percent to 37 percent.

But Republicans took an edge among those most concerned about foreign policy, winning those voters 56 percent to 42 percent for Democrats. And those who cited illegal immigration as a top concern cast their votes for Republicans by a 3-to-1 margin.

- Carrie Dann