New Poll Shows Coronavirus Pandemic is the Main Issue on Texans’ Minds

August 20, 2020

Strong support for bold policy solutions to help working families and ensure safe and accessible elections

A recent poll commissioned by the State Innovation Exchange (SiX) and conducted by TargetSmart shows that Texans hold deep concerns about the risk COVID-19 poses to their health, the impact on the economy and the election and they support bold policy action. 

Voters Support Steps to Ensure Safe and Accessible Elections

Texas voters overwhelmingly believe that the state government has a role to play in safely and fairly administering elections (89%). Given the limited options for voters even during a pandemic, voters report they will still plan to vote early in-person (53%) or on Election Day (29%). Even though the state has taken steps to make vote by mail more difficult, 15% of Texans still prefer that option.

Texans strongly support policies to ensure the election is safe and accessible for all eligible voters:

  • Lengthen the window for early voting and allow voters to cast ballots in person up through the day before Election Day (89%); 
  • Open additional polling locations to reduce crowds and lines (88%);
  • Allow any registered Texas voter to vote by mail (63%); and
  • Mail all registered voters applications to vote-by-mail (57%).

The Role of Government in Issues Facing Texas

When asked if the state government should play a role in some of the issues facing working families, voters overwhelmingly supported government engagement in:  

  • Stopping the spread of the coronavirus (87%);
  • Ensuring equal access to high-quality K-12 education (83%);
  • Ensuring struggling families and children have access to food (83%);
  • Equal pay for equal work (77%); and
  • Ensuring access to affordable health care (73%).

Voters Concerned about COVID Impact on Health and Strongly Support Bold Economic Policies

By a nearly three-to-one margin, Texas voters want the state government to invest in its residents to ensure they are safe, healthy, and economically secure (62%) rather than the state keeping taxes low and cutting funds to key services like education, infrastructure, and unemployment insurance (18%).

Over 1-in-3 Texas respondents reported they have been laid-off or had their hour cut (35%). Voters express grave concerns about small business closures (79%) and losing work and income (83%). Texans also believe businesses should be required to provide safe working conditions or be penalized for negligence if workers get sick (57%).

Given the current crisis, Texans support policies that will address the economic hardships being faced by many:

  • Providing low-interest loans to small businesses to help them make it through the crisis (94%);
  • Extending the grace period for people to pay health insurance bills before their coverage can be canceled (88%);
  • Limiting what drug companies can charge for prescription drugs (87%);
  • Offering people in Texas the option to buy into the same public health insurance plans that are available to state employees if they want to (86%);
  • Creating an insurance plan to provide paid family and medical leave for employees (79%); and
  • Requiring workplaces to provide paid sick days to their employees (78%); 

Click here for more results.

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