More Than 40 Percent of Americans Cannot Name VP Candidates

Over 40 Percent can't name vice presidential nominee of either major party.

ByABC News
October 2, 2016, 9:26 AM

— -- Ahead of the first and only vice presidential debate of the 2016 race, more than 40 percent of Americans cannot name the vice presidential nominee of either major party.

ABC News together with our partners at SSRS survey research firm asked an online opinion panel about the upcoming debate between Republican Gov. Mike Pence and Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine, which takes places Tuesday at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia.

Asked to identify Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton's running mates, 41 percent of respondents could not correctly name the GOP's vice presidential nominee and 46 percent were unsure of the name of the Democratic vice presidential nominee.

A majority of Americans say they are likely to tune in to the debate Tuesday night. Sixty-four percent are likely to watch the vice presidential showdown, 10 percent fewer than the number who said they expected to watch the first presidential debate between Democratic nominee Clinton and Republican nominee Trump last week.

The first presidential debate on Sept. 26 made history with a record number of viewers: 84 million tuned in to watch Clinton and Trump face off, according to Nielsen ratings, making it the most watched debate ever.

Just 10 percent of Americans say Tuesday's vice presidential debate may have a major impact on their vote in November, compared to 23 percent who last month said the first presidential debate could sway their vote.

See full results here.

The ABC News/SSRS Poll was conducted using the SSRS Probability Panel. Interviews were conducted online overnight from September 29 – September 30, 2016 among a nationally representative sample of 245 respondents age 18 and older. The margin of error for total respondents is +/-8.1% at the 95% confidence level. Design effect is 1.68. The SSRS Probability Panel is a probability-based, online panel of adults recruited from random digit dialed landline and cell phone numbers. For more information, visit