By Jay Heflin - 08/16/10 07:40 PM EDT
That percentage is down from January, when 61 percent said the economy was crucial in determining support for congressional candidates.
Unemployment, the federal budget, even ethics in government and healthcare beat out taxes as being major concerns for voters this election. Only 38 percent of respondents deemed taxes extremely important, as compared to 48 percent for unemployment and the deficit, 47 percent for ethics and 45 percent for healthcare.
Voter concern about the economy has increased since the recession, with just 33 percent of respondents deeming it extremely important in May of 2007. Concern over the issue peaked in February of 2009, with 70 percent giving it top priority.
Concern over taxes also peaked in February of 2009, with 43 percent saying the issue was extremely important to them.
Results for healthcare show it not being a driving force at the polls, despite calls from Democrats to reform the system.
Just 44 percent of respondents said it was extremely important in October of 2008, one month before President Obama was elected into office. Oddly, more respondents (45 percent) are now concerned about the issue after healthcare reform was enacted into law.