SBD/1/Leagues Governing Bodies

WASHINGTON POST POLL SAYS FANS WANT POLITICIANS BENCHED

     The ABC NEWS/WASHINGTON POST poll surveyed 1,026 randomly
selected adults (382 of which identified themselves as baseball
fans) from January 26-29.  The margin of error on the poll is +/-
 3% for the full sample, and +/- 6% for the fans subsample
(Richard Morin, WASHINGTON POST, 2/1).
QUESTION:  As you may know, professional baseball players have
been on strike since August.  Whose side would you say you're on
-- the players' or the owners'?
ALL
FANS
OWNERS' SIDE
48%
55%
PLAYERS' SIDE
27
28
OTHER
25
17

QUESTION: Do you think baseball players are paid too much, not enough or do you think they are paid about right?
ALL
FANS
TOO MUCH
70%
71%
NOT ENOUGH
2
1
ABOUT RIGHT
24
27

QUESTION: Do you think there should be a limit or "cap" on what major league baseball owners may pay their players, or don't you think there should be a limit?
ALL
FANS
SHOULD BE LIMIT
71%
73%
NO LIMIT
26
26

QUESTION: Do you favor or oppose using replacement players in major league baseball games if the strike is not settled by the scheduled opening day of baseball season in April?
ALL
FANS
FAVOR
59%
61%
OPPOSE
35
38

QUESTION: Do you think you, personally, will be as big a baseball fan as you were before the strike, more of a fan or less of a baseball fan?
ALL
FANS
AS BIG A FAN
35%
47%
MORE OF A FAN
6
7
LESS OF A FAN
42
44
NOT A FAN
17
1

QUESTION: As you may know, President Clinton may ask Congress to step in to settle the baseball strike if the owners and players have not reached an agreement by Feb. 6. Suppose no agreement is reached by then: Do you think Clinton and Congress should force a settlement of the strike, or should the players and owners be left alone to work out an agreement for themselves?
ALL
FANS
CLINTON/CONGRESS SHOULD FORCE AGREEMENT
21%
32%
LEFT ALONE TO WORKOUT AGREEMENT THEMSELVES
78
68

REACTIONS TO THE SURVEY: WASHINGTON POST pollster Richard Morin writes that the survey indicates that MLB owners -- and not the players -- "are winning the important battle for public support." But, Morin adds, "However quickly a settlement comes, the survey suggests that the strike has hurt professional baseball and particularly the image of professional baseball players." MLBPA Exec Dir Don Fehr "dismissed the findings and suggested that the language of many of the poll questions produced biased results that favored the owners." Fehr: "I would not pay serious attention to it." Acting MLB Commissioner Bud Selig: "These numbers are absolutely consistent with all the polling we've done. ... Having said that, it only points again to the fact that we have to get back to the table and make a deal" (Richard Morin, WASHINGTON POST, 2/1).
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