July 5th, 2009
07:46 AM ET

The King of Pop – and polls

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/HEALTH/06/25/michael.jackson.heart.health/art.jackson.2005.gi.jpg caption="Michael Jackson, loved by millions, but not by all."]

David Puente
AC360° Producer

Get this - about half of all Americans count themselves as fans of the King of Pop. That’s what a new CNN poll released today says. It might seem right now like everyone's a Michael Jackson fan.

But it turns out there are big gender, generation, ethnic and even political gaps when it comes to who admires Michael Jackson.

Interviews for the poll were done between June 26-28, with just over 1000 adult Americans. Here are some of the results, tell us how accurate you think they are and how you compare…

Would you say you were a fan of Michael Jackson, or not?

Yes, a fan 51%

No, not a fan 49%

Of that total of fans and non-fans the results here broken down further by gender and race:

                                     Men        Women        White        Non-White

Yes, a fan                   45%         56%              42%            73%

No, not a fan             54%         43%              57%            27%

Broken down by age:

                              18- 34       35-49       50 – 64         65+

Yes, a fan             58%            62%          49%           24%

No, not a fan        42%            38%         49%           76%

Even broken down by political party:

                                                   Republican                       Democrat

Yes, a fan                                    63%                                     35%

No, not a fan                               36%                                     64%

Filed under: David Puente • Michael Jackson
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. Ms. Bernstein

    Each decade of my life has been filled with Michael Jackson's music.
    The 60's, The 70's, The 80's, The 90's, and the new millenium. I can pinpoint moments from my life-high school dances, clubs, New York City-when they announced Michael's solo career, Los Angeles-"Thriller", and on and on. Lving in Vegas-even encountered constant MJ news as he lived here several times-and came here with his kids. His death is the end of an era-but the beat goes on, and on, and on...Fly away Michael, above the clouds and beyond-'where dreams are born and time is never planned": from Peter Pan the musical.

    July 6, 2009 at 12:07 pm |
  2. marlene schenter

    Michael Jackson was a talented and gifted child and young adult. He went on to be an eccentric, weird, and indulged adult. He hasn't done a creative thing in years and those around were just milking him for dollars. His lifestyle was disgusting. The waste was overwhelming. He is still referred to as a boy....he hasn't been a boy in a long time. What is the obsession that requires 24 hr. coverage over and over, not only from CNN (all shows) but Dateline, 20/20 and all other media outlets. I'm sick of it. Haven't watched a newscast since he passed away.

    July 6, 2009 at 12:03 pm |
  3. Isabella

    Let's remember that he is somebody's son, father, uncle, brother and friend. Capatilize in the goodness he did and let him rest in peace.

    July 6, 2009 at 11:43 am |
  4. Kim Lee

    I look at CNN all the time and I love AC360; but not one time have you reported that the youngman Jordan Chandler ,said almost 7-days ago that Michael Jackson did not (molest) Him.
    Jodan said on the website I found golbal.grind that I ask google to find any information on this story I heard it on the DC- News channel, that his father made him tell the LIE– he sayes that under the influence of a controversial father Even Chandler, he made him LIE THAT Michael Jackson NEVER touhed him. and that he is sooo sorry. this is sad please look into this.
    My hope is that CNN will reports this story and not just all the bad stuff. In the eyes of telling the truth it is fair for us who enjoy CNN.

    July 6, 2009 at 11:41 am |
  5. Holly

    michael jackson was the best performer ever.i loved how he danced, especially the moonwalk and how he leaned forward in smooth criminal.he will always be in my heart.

    July 6, 2009 at 8:00 am |
  6. Niala Dwarika

    How very informative. I am interested to see that a larger number of Democrats are fans as opposed to Republicans. I wonder what that means ( I am not an American). (?)

    July 6, 2009 at 7:47 am |
  7. Bakari

    Just look at his album sales. What does the race have to do with music. Music is a universal sound and Michael J had just that.........more than anyone ever had, has, or ever will.

    July 6, 2009 at 7:02 am |
  8. Thelma Allen

    It's really sad that you keep trying to down Michael Jackson, who cares what your polls say. People in the media try and down MJ whenever they can calling him names like jacko and wacko. I didn't hear you going all out when it was printed Elvis Presley made the comment " all blacks can do for him is buy his records and shine his shoes". I was so happy Al Sharpton came on CNN and spoke about the disrespect MJ is receiving in the media. If you didn't like MJ fine your lost but don't disrespect him in the eyes of those of us who do. Some of your readers are calling him a child molester, why do you print such hate. This man was never charged with any crime and if you did not see him molest a child than how do you know this. Please give this man the proper respect that he desires. I lost my sister when she was 50 and she was also the seventh child but of ten. I know how the family feels and they should not be subjected to the hateful comments of some of these disrespectful people. Michael go with god now he will protect and keep you now, you can moon-walk in heaven now.

    July 6, 2009 at 5:55 am |
  9. Lee Davis

    First we must decide as a general concensus what the definition of the word "fan" means. Yes, I did respect and truly appreciate his gift and talent not only as a performer, but more importantly, as a loving humanitarian. Did I follow his life as though it was my very own? Of course not! However, I did have the wherewithal to realize there was a lot more to his dynamic and many times unpredictablee behavior. What he did for humanity completely overshadows any of his compulsory addictions and idiosyncracies! We created him and we also destroyed him. All of us had at least something to do with his death just as we had something to do with his life. We created a superstar and destroyed a legend. Like all legends, his legacy is eternal. Was MJ bigger than life? To millions yes, but to himself, he really did not have a life. He merely had an existence. MJ experienced peace in three aspects: On stage, with children, and sleeping. No one ever seen the man in the mirror (MJ), only the viewers reflection!

    July 6, 2009 at 2:43 am |
  10. Kimberly Mercier

    Michael has always been one day younger than me. I have so much sorrow with his passing. Watching him since we were about 5 years old through the last time i could see him on t.v. The music lived in Michael and he in it, he just let it flow right through him and in that, he attained musical genius, dancing as if his feet never touched the ground. He loves us still from the Other Side, where he is safe. Praying for safety and comfort for his lovely children. Thank you for honoring Michael's life.

    July 6, 2009 at 2:32 am |
  11. Patick

    It is time for CNN to move on. There are alot more importants things going on the in the world then death of Mr Jackson. Me and group of friends are going to stop watching cnn unti they start paying attention to the important things that are going in the world

    July 6, 2009 at 2:12 am |
  12. Billy

    HI Anderson,

    Tip... Listen to the song Morphine on the Michael Jackson's Blood on the Dand Floor. In about 3:40 mintues into the song sings about Demerol.

    Los Angeles

    July 6, 2009 at 2:02 am |
  13. cg

    I grew up with the J5 and Michael, but I have heard this statement made so many times in regards to the amount of records, and records sales in comparision to Elvis and to John Lennon. Saying that he has out sold both of these artists. There is something that is not being taken into account for the records that each of these individuals did sale, and that was the population of the world. All of these artist are and were great in their "own" right and should not be compared. They in their own way contributated to making a change in how we, as human beings act in today's ever changing world.

    July 6, 2009 at 2:01 am |
  14. joe

    Micheal Jackson Gave More to CHARITY than most employee will ever earn in PAY CHECK. Before you speak negative of anyone who cant speak back that really makes you wonder what kind of world do we live in.

    July 6, 2009 at 1:37 am |
  15. Jackie Mendez

    Thank you for all the coverage regarding Michael Jackson. I was not part of the poll, but I am a fan of his. We are about the same age and I know his work since he began performing.

    I appreciate all the different memories and videos of him, although at this time the negative comments of some people is hurtful. All his family, friends and fans are still mourning and sometimes it seems as though their opinions are taken as fact by the show (i.e. Headliners and Legends). Man in The Mirror is better and less critical. I appreciate continued reporting on the custody of his children, Neverland, etc. As I would like to keep up with what happens with his legacy. I am praying for his family, especially his children which were so dear to him. I encourage anyone who wants to know or see videos of Michael and they way he viewed his life and others to google "Michael Jacksons home movies". Thank you.

    July 6, 2009 at 1:16 am |
  16. Carol Ann

    Anderson, has anybody made the connection about MJ's hands yet? The nurse described Michael stating to her that as soon as he got the drip of Diprovan in his HAND he was instantly asleep. Years ago I noticed and again today was reminded of them....marks on MJ's HAND...take a look at the clip where he climbs out of a black SUV, smiles and poses for the camera, then, embarrassed, reaches out and covers the camera lense with his right hand. He was wearing a white shirt and a cream vest.....he has 3 marks on his palm. Maybe the signs were there then. On the video clip of his press conference for his upcoming tour, look at his left palm when he raises his hand to waive to the croud. A large spot is on his palm. I love MJ but it seems the signs were there all along. Of course, I could be wrong.

    July 6, 2009 at 12:49 am |
  17. Nduta

    Not surprised by the results, except one. That last one seems wrong. I would have expected Democrats to be more fans of Michael than Republicans. Are you sure the numbers did not get mixed up?

    July 6, 2009 at 12:45 am |
  18. Akeisha Matthews

    I have a question and a comment...

    My comment is that poll could be inaccurate because alot of people stop being MJ fans once they thought MJ was a child molester! I watch CNN daily..especially Anderson Cooper!

    My question...it's all over the net about Jordan Chandler admitting that he lied about MJ molestation case..says he's so sorry now. Why isn't the media broadcasting this or looking into this story...maybe vindicate MJ before his funeral? Just wondering?

    July 6, 2009 at 12:08 am |
  19. antonia Acevedo

    I have some questions, And I have my option. First off would you throw your children off the bridge, for all the money in the world. Joe and Debbie did. I believed that Michael did have his faithful friends. And i also believe that Michael had his phony friend, that linger around like a fly catcher. They took his kindness, for weakness. Everyone covered their self. The Lawyers, Doctors, friends. The doctors shot him up with prescription drugs, that took his life. And in turn the money they took from Michael, gave them life. I guess now all of the sudden, his so called friends. Want to speak about his addiction. we all knew that Michael had an addiction. He said that himself. So why did they enable him? To me that is their guilt speaking. Just to justify their own actions in this.( Or what they say) is that Michael would of cut them off. I would rather be cut off. Then to loose a good friend. Now my Option. I feel that Michael's mother should have custody over the children. Michael's father was very abusive. His mother was an enabler. Times has changed since then. The mother and father are no longer together. Michael had to endure a lot of pain in his life. Please let this man RIP. The only time that I've have seen Michael Happy. Was at Never Land, his Children, and his Music. If you know anything else please let me know. I will truly miss Michael, and I really didn't know him like that. I never grew up with a silver spoon in my mouth, and never had that kind of money in my life. Like they say money tends to change people. I would rather have Michael here, then to have that money. Because I know what it is to be a true friend. RIP Friend, Brother, father, My Best friend.

    July 6, 2009 at 12:02 am |
  20. Tina Robinson

    I am upset on the children battle. Why is everyone so interested to see if Micheal fathered these children. He is their Father and has been for 12, 11, and 7 years. These children just lost their father so why cant they just leave it alone and let these kids mourn in their own way.

    July 5, 2009 at 11:45 pm |
  21. Benjamin Bates

    Enough already...The guys been dead for 2 weeks..Let it go! There's more important things in the world than this wierdo and I haven't met anyone who's not sick and tired of the whole circus you've created around this talented but sick individual.

    Thank you

    July 5, 2009 at 11:29 pm |
  22. lauren hill

    Google Jordan Chandler

    Jordan Chandler admits he lied about Michael Jackson of indecency, which became the pilot to the court case against the “King of Pop”. Jordan Chandler the child that accused Michael for misbehaving with him finally came forward to tell that the case was based on lies. Evan Chandler was the father of the kid, he never approved the friendship between Jordan and Michael Jackson, and he is the one who accused “King of Pop” for having an unnatural relationship with his son.

    Michael and Jordan were friends but Jordan’s father never approved their friendship, encouraged by his father Jordan charged “MJ” for the indecency in their relation. The case hit the streets, newspapers and tabloids and the only names people knew back then were Michael Jackson, Jordan and Evan Chandler, and media and law firms are hounding Michael Jackson.

    July 5, 2009 at 11:02 pm |
  23. David

    I'm a Michael Jackson fan. But Rev., Al Sharpton needs to shut his mouth. CNN is doing their job and Al just wants to speak of just the positive side of MJ and not the negative side. At least CNN is doing their job. How many times have you heard Al mention Jesus in all the meetings? And he calls himself 'Reverend?' Ha!

    July 5, 2009 at 10:45 pm |
  24. annie

    i pray for MJ and his children and family, and i pray that thoses KIDS r not watchin ANY TV, talk about tromitizing kids!! it dosen't matter if MJ was the father or not he rased them kids from babys til now people are missing the fact that it takes alot to be a dad!!!! he was a great man from what i see of him, i think the most of the people of the world lose not only one of the best pop stars ever but a people of their childhood like losing i "blankie" or a ring that has been past on from ur grandmother its hard!! Losing MJ now is like when my mother's genaration losing elvis is it bigger YES i think so becausr so many loved him white-black-tall-short-from young to old at one piont one or most of us has tried to dance,talked,sing,or even been in a great happy mood ridein down the street or highway and turned on the radio and hard "beat it",bad, its didn't matter what song but u turned it up and sang like u've never sang be4 he will be missed and i vote that he should and out of the respect of him he should be buried at neverland ranch god love everyone thanks MJ!!!!RIP

    July 5, 2009 at 10:38 pm |
  25. adela palenzuela

    um..........lets pray for Al Sharpton silence

    July 5, 2009 at 9:38 pm |
  26. will

    Rather a fan or not, a human being has past on to the heavens, one that has left a "enormous" impression on the world, rather African American, Caucasian, hispanic, or any other ethnicity. He touched us all. Let the "man" rest in peace and let his family/friends morn in their loss of a wonderful human being...

    July 5, 2009 at 9:34 pm |
  27. Roxanne

    Well, duh! Someone was surprised by these statistics?

    July 5, 2009 at 9:24 pm |
  28. sue

    I'm am a fan always have been ,always be. I am white and 50years old

    July 5, 2009 at 8:14 pm |
  29. aestar101

    I'm shocked that mostly Republicans are fans of him.

    July 5, 2009 at 8:00 pm |
  30. Heba

    Why haven't your channel spoken of Micheal Jackson's converting to Islam this past November? This was reported in the Sun newspaper and other major European newspapers. Why is your network avoiding revealing this piece of information to people?

    July 5, 2009 at 7:59 pm |
  31. Heba

    Why isn't Micheal Jackson's religion being talked about. He converted to Islam (not the Nation of Islam-there is a huge difference) this past November? The source: The Sun and other European newspapers. Why is American media leaving this piece of information out.?

    July 5, 2009 at 7:53 pm |
  32. Bri in Columbia SC

    I just wish to send my sympathy and well wishes to the family (immediate and entertainment family) of Michael Jackson. I saw Michael as a very creative, artistic entertainer. However, I feel that many of his closest friends, such as the wonderful Mr. Al Sharpton and Ms. Queen Latifah has overstated his character. By all means, Michael has earn the title of King of Pop. That he is. That he will always be; even in my eye sight. But on the other hand. Michael did nothing in terms of helping the Black race. I understand that Michael gave millions to Africa. He supported the drunk-driver association. However, Michael fall short of being an Icon. Mr. Sharpton, you are one of the 'Head' of the Black race. Many of our youth look up to you, need you, and respect you. The words of which you speak must represent what you have faught for, for so many years. That is a system of belief for the Black upon himself. An ICON is one who is an idol; one who represents. Michael failed to represent the Black race. The message he presented to the Black youth is: In order to rise to the top; in order to get respect of the upmost; in order to be acknowleged, you have to deface your self. Michael hated the skin of Black, that he preferred to spend millions of dollars to purchase the seed of a White man than to display is own skin. I fail to display that type of individual before my grandchildren as an Icon. Black leaders, please do not sell yourself short for the sake of money. Remember, our children are listening and watching every word of which you speake. And they will hold it against you at some point-in-time.

    July 5, 2009 at 7:07 pm |
  33. Joanne Pacicca

    Numbers prove that millions will mourn his loss.

    July 5, 2009 at 7:06 pm |
  34. Michele

    Polls are interesting but why haven't we heard a statement from the lawyers representing the physician who was with MJ at his rented house?

    July 5, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  35. Todd

    Enough! Enough! Enough already. The only story that has been banged over the heads of Americans more is of our current President. Enough!

    July 5, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  36. K. Williams

    One would think Michael Jackson should have known he was Moon Walking in Dangerous territory with taking so many meds. That is so Bad especially if he really was only 115 lbs on that 5’ 10” frame, it must have certainly felt like a Thriller not being able to get much needed sleep, but if one’s going to pick a friend let it not be meds but perhaps, Ben or even Dirty Diana or Billie Jean that might sound a bit Off the Wall given the nature of each of these characters. Perhaps he and his handlers thought he could Beat It!!! I really like his music but he was a very conflicted and sad person, poor soul now he’s Gone too Soon. May he R.I.P. as we each keep thinking Never Can Say Goodbye.

    K. Williams, Pickering, Ontario, Canada

    July 5, 2009 at 3:21 pm |
  37. Eleanor

    You would not know it based on media coverage but it is true. Not everybody was a Michael Jackson fan, myself included. If it's age related, well I'm a senior and have gone to youtube to listen to his music to see what the fuss is about and can find no reason to become a fan. That his music had a beat–I'll give it that–it sticks in the head, the beat that is. Music? Well, some of the slower songs are actually music and he had a sweet, soft voice, genderless to be diplomatic I'd say. If he opened the world for other black singers then great; that was needed. If he spawned the poems that are passing as music today, (rap), ugh, because rap is not music, it's poetry. If you cannot hum it, then it is not music and you can't hum rap. In case Jackson did not molest children then I feel sorry for him and for his ruined reputation as everybody took advantage of him and made a fortune off him. That everybody and their brother are now coming out of the woodwork to speak about him I find disgusting. If all these people had cared about this man they should have been able to help him not do what he did to kill himself. As to how much he loved his children–if he loved them so much, he would not have put himself first by taking mixtures of medications that could kill them knowing they had only a 79 year old woman left to care for his kids.

    July 5, 2009 at 3:14 pm |
  38. rachael weiss

    I am a Music gal my entire life...And now Im bored.....Enough.......MOve on.......Really........Yep I loved his music........There is more news...Find out what killed him....

    July 5, 2009 at 12:37 pm |
  39. Donna

    was a fan until I became older; common, I guess....Grew up with Jackson and Donny Osmond; have to admit that Jackson was a phenomenal performer

    July 5, 2009 at 12:05 pm |
  40. Phuoi Trinh

    I'm shocked that Democrats aren't fans, by 64% . That is shocking !

    July 5, 2009 at 11:17 am |
  41. Lina

    I get non-white people more likely to be a fan but... women and Republicans are more likely to be fans? Okay, maybe I can even understand women being more likely to be fans but Republicans?!?! By a 2 to 1 margin? I don't think so.

    July 5, 2009 at 10:43 am |
  42. Susanne Beauchamp

    I for 1 was a BIG Fan, since early days, but the more I hear about his private life, the more concern I have for him as a person, I cannot believe what have happend to him over the years. I am shocked and horrified that it came to this, such a brilliant human being and so lost, I will never understand, I will still miss him as I grew up on MJ back in Denmark and England. He was my rock and my best friend.

    He will be even bigger now he is gone,

    Love You Michael, and I will always miss you.


    July 5, 2009 at 10:28 am |
  43. Babs

    I'm a fan of all the U.S. soldiers out there putting their lives on the line for whatever reason. I'm a fan of people like Paul Newman may he RIP, a great humanitarian who got little media coverage for all that he has done and has set aside for children. I'm a fan of my dad, who passed away suddenly on June 14th. He was a great man. How sad it is when the media covers(expoloits) an accused pedophile drug abuser entertainer with such great homage. It is very disturbing to me. Such hypocrites. They shunned MJ when he was being accused of pedophelia, now they are capitalizing on his death like all his friends and family and people who act like they knew him, but didn't. No one knows the meaning of the "white glove"....think about it. (A mask)

    July 5, 2009 at 9:54 am |
  44. Als

    Michael Jackson 50 concerts sold in a matter of minutes, says alot about your polls. Entertainment has no political agender at all in this situation. He is the Biggest entertainer in the world black ,white ,asians and the list goes on.

    July 5, 2009 at 9:27 am |
  45. Brenda

    Became a fan of Michael Jackson, after his death. His earlier songs, "We Are The World", "Man in the Mirror," revealed a sensitive sweet and caring person who ended saying, "I love you," at his last TV appearance. That's who I admire.

    July 5, 2009 at 9:26 am |
  46. Christie

    Hey - When Bill Schneider showed this poll on friday, it showed more Democrats than Republicans were Jackson fans. Wondering if it's either a mistake in the copy, or perhaps a formatting issue with the article itself... or did Bill Schneider actually get it wrong?

    July 5, 2009 at 9:07 am |