Pennsylvanians Support Progressive Agenda in Harrisburg

June 16, 2020

A recent poll commissioned by the State Innovation Exchange (SiX) shows Pennsylvanians are concerned about the spread of COVID-19 and support widespread testing, prioritize working people in the economic response, and support reforms to make our democracy stronger. 

Pennsylvanians Broadly Support Widespread Free Coronavirus Testing, Vaccination, and Treatment 

Residents strongly agree with: 

  • Widespread testing (66 percent strongly agree, 89 percent total agree) 
  • Widespread testing and vaccination of Pennsylvanians (65 percent agree, 89 percent total agree). 
  • Coronavirus testing and treatment should involve no out-of-pocket costs (56 percent strongly agree, 82 percent total agree) 

Pennsylvania Voters Support Various Economic Responses that Prioritize Working People

A majority of residents agree that: 

  • Corporations and big businesses should spend their bailout and tax cut money on their employees, rather than on stock buybacks and bonuses (83 percent total agree) 
  • State government should expand unemployment benefits throughout the state so more people can qualify for benefits (81 total support) 
  • State government should create relief packages  for small businesses that continue paying their staff and pledge to avoid layoffs (81 percent total agree) 

Additionally, when presented with two possible solutions for addressing Pennsylvania’s budget shortfall due to the coronavirus pandemic, a solid majority of people gravitate toward the progressive argument for increasing taxes on the wealthy and out-of-state corporations. Nearly two in three Pennsylvanians express a preference for increased taxes while fewer than one in three voters prefer spending cuts on core services. 

Pennsylvanians are also broadly open to a range of working people’s policies, including a $15 minimum wage, paid family leave, and paid sick leave. 

Democracy Reform Agenda Broadly Popular, Particularly Among Black Voters 

Pennsylvanians are very supportive of democracy reforms, including:

  • Investments in election technology and conducting mandatory audits (76 percent total support, 87 percent of Black residents support)
  • The creation of an automatic voter registration program in Pennsylvania (60 percent total support)
  • Sending mail-in ballot applications to all registered voters (59 percent total support, 86 percent of Black residents support)
  • The creation of community vote centers and designated curbside ballot drop-offs (53 percent total support, 80 percent of Black residents support)

For the full poll memo, see here

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