Public Opinion

First, please watch the following video, which does a good job explaining “Public Opinion”, along with some of the reasons why it is important in a Democracy. The video at the very end (scroll down) addresses some of the factors that influence or “shape” Public Opinion:

Now, discuss the impact of public opinion on public policy and the political process. Provide a detailed response to at least ONE of the following, providing specific examples (as applicable):
1). Does a relationship exist between public opinion and public policy? Asked another way, does public opinion influence public policy, and/or the operation and administration of the government?
2). How does the media, especially social media (Links to an external site.), impact public opinion on policy and political issues?
3). Considering circumstances surrounding the past two Presidential elections (Links to an external site.), should politicians and voters trust public opinion poll results?
–More Questions Below…

4). Do public opinion polls accurately reflect how the public feels about a policy issue? Basically, our public opinion polls reliable in expressing public sentiment (as it relates specifically to a public policy issue or initiative)?
5). Under what circumstances are public officials and politicians influenced by public opinion polls?
6). Finally, why is it important to measure or assess public opinion in a Democracy? Do public opinion polls offer any substantive, meaningful value – to citizens, public officials, journalists, or others – in a Democratic society?