Poll shows broad support for offshore drilling

Gas prices are well off the record highs they reached in the summer of 2008 but Americans apparently haven’t lost any fervor for drilling, according to a new Rasmussen poll.

The firm, which has been described as a conservative leaning polling firm, conducted a national telephone survey that found 72 percent of voters believe offshore drilling should be allowed. That was the highest level of support in the three years Rasmussen has conducted the survey.

The poll was done after the announcement by the Obama administration to open more areas offshore to oil and gas development. According to Rasmussen, most voters wanted the administration to go further. Fifty-nine percent of respondents say offshore drilling should be permitted off the coasts of California and New England, areas still largely shut off to oil development.