Beyond the Beltway is a joint public polling initiative led by Pete Brodnitz and Mike Gehrke of the Washington, D.C. office of Benenson Strategy Group (BSG) and Doug Thornell and JB Poersch of SKDKnickerbocker. The studies are funded by both firms.

BSG is a leading strategic research consultancy that advises many of the world’s most successful companies, heads of state, and institutions, including the President of the United States, Toyota, and Intel. SKDKnickerbocker delivers unparalleled strategic communications advice to Fortune 500 companies, non-profits, philanthropic organizations, labor unions, and political committees and candidates.

Our February 2015 poll was done by BSG and consists of 1,032 total interviews conducted February 26-27 among registered voters selected from an opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the national registered voter population. The margin of error for overall results is ±3.05% and higher among subgroups. Most surveys report a margin of error that represents some, but not all, potential survey errors. This report includes a model-based margin of error, which rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample, rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. 

The full questionnaire is available here.  


Pete Brodnitz is a partner at Benenson Strategy Group, leading the firm’s Washington, D.C. office. He brings more than twenty years of strategic research experience for his clients. These include thirteen heads of state on four continents, domestic political leaders at all levels, Fortune 500 companies, and leading advocacy and nonprofit institutions. 

J.B. Poersch oversees SKDKnickerbocker’s political division and uses his extensive political experience to develop strategy for both corporate and advocacy clients. He is a cofounder and a general strategist for Senate Majority PAC – a Super PAC that won 16 of 19 Senate races that were active in the 2012 cycle. 

Mike Gehrke is a vice president with Benenson Strategy Group with more than 20 years of experience working with international and domestic political and public affairs clients to develop winning insights-based strategies. Mike can be followed on Twitter at @mikegehrke.

Doug Thornell is a senior strategist at SKDKnickerbocker. He is the former spokesman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, senior advisor to Congressman Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), deputy political at the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, and communications director for the Congressional Black Caucus.