The general public displays a limited amount of political knowledge, especially high levels of political knowledge. Low levels of political knowledge persist in spite of advances in technology and the wide availability of information. Furthermore, factors like question phrasing or the timing of polls contribute to the seeming inconsistency or instability of public opinion polling.
With this in mind, what are some of the advantages and disadvantages of using public opinion polling? How should the United States balance public opinion against representatives judgment? Should the public be upset when public officials fail to adopt policies that are consistent with public opinion? How do we determine the proper balance between responding to and ignoring public opinion? Do you believe that the public is ignorant or collectively wise?