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Fox News Poll: Voters say yes to face masks, no to rallies

Voters gave a thumbs-up to face masks and a thumbs-down to political rallies in the latest Fox News Poll. Eighty (80) percent have a favorable view of mask-wearers, including 89 percent of Democrats, 68 percent of Republicans, and 61 percent of those who strongly approve of President Trump’s job performance.

By a 36-point margin, voters say presidential candidates holding large political events and rallies is a bad idea (23 percent good idea, 59 percent bad idea). Another 16 percent say it depends.

Currently, 84 percent are at least somewhat concerned about the spread of coronavirus in the U.S.  That includes 54 percent who feel very concerned.

While those are big numbers, there is less worry today than there was earlier this spring.  Concern peaked at 94 percent in April, with 70 percent very concerned at that time.

The partisan differences are striking:  70 percent of Democrats and 53 percent of independents are very concerned about coronavirus spreading, while just 35 percent of Republicans feel the same.

The survey finds voters have mixed views on whether the government’s response to the virus was too little, too much, or just right.  Nineteen percent say the quarantines and lockdowns went too far, while 38 percent say not far enough, and another 38 percent say about right.

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Eight in 10 Republicans believe the government’s response was about right (47 percent) or went too far (33 percent).  Nine in 10 Democrats say it was about right (32 percent) or was too little (57 percent).

Overall, 44 percent approve of Trump’s response to coronavirus, and 56 percent approve of Dr. Deborah Birx, while positive bipartisan reviews put approval of Dr. Anthony Fauci at 72 percent.  Sixty-five percent of Republicans and 80 percent of Democrats approve of Fauci.

More voters continue to approve of their state government’s response (68 percent) than how the federal government is handling the pandemic (50 percent).

When asked if the pandemic is under control, 7 percent say completely, 16 percent mostly, 43 percent somewhat, and 33 percent “not at all.”

The poll also finds concerns on both ends of the reopening debate.  Seventy-seven percent fear that opening too quickly will lead to an increase in infections and more shutdowns (including 46 percent “very” concerned).

On the other hand, 73 percent are worried that moving too slowly will cause more economic harm (35 percent “very” worried).

Over double the number of Democrats (62 percent) as Republicans (28 percent) feel “very” concerned about moving too quickly.

And more than twice as many Republicans (51 percent) as Democrats (24 percent) are “very” concerned about reopening too slowly.

“Americans are spooked,” says Republican pollster Daron Shaw, who conducts the Fox News Poll with Democrat Chris Anderson. “They are caught between the rock of the pandemic and the hard place of continued economic uncertainty.”

Poll Pourri

— The number of voters giving the economy positive marks is up 8 points since last month and currently stands at 28 percent excellent/good. That is still a long way from the 55 percent who rated conditions positively in January.

— Forty-nine percent approve of how the president is handling the economy, down from a high of 56 percent in January. The economy is still his best issue, as fewer approve on health care (39 percent) and race relations (32 percent).

— A record 56 percent have a favorable view of ObamaCare, up from 52 percent last July.  The shift comes from an uptick among Democrats (+3 points), Republicans (+3), and independents (+8).  Still, almost all Democrats (85 percent) view the health care law positively compared to over half of independents (53 percent) and about a quarter of Republicans (23 percent).

— Two-thirds of voters see unemployment (67 percent) and coronavirus (67 percent) as major threats to the stability of the United States.  Sixty-four percent perceive racism as a major threat, up from 58 percent in September.

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— Approval of Congress is down 11 points and stands at 24 percent.  Some 35 percent approved in April, soon after lawmakers passed a $2 trillion dollar coronavirus relief package.

Conducted June 13-16 2020 under the joint direction of Beacon Research (D) and Shaw & Company (R), this Fox News Poll includes interviews with 1,343 randomly chosen registered voters nationwide who spoke with live interviewers on both landlines and cellphones.  The poll has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points for all registered voters.

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