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Two-thirds support teacher strikes in new poll
Public support for teacher strikes remains steadfast following months of strikes in states across the country, according to a new poll.
A USA Today/Ipsos poll released Wednesday found that 66 percent of Americans say that public school teachers have the right to strike for issues such as higher pay, better school funding and stronger benefits.
That view largely coincides with a majority of Americans who say public school teachers are underpaid (59 percent) and are forced to spend too much of their own money on school supplies for students (78 percent.)
Just 34 percent of Americans say public school teachers are sufficiently paid, according to the poll, while a minority of Americans including just one in three Republicans say public school teachers should not be allowed to strike.
Americans have less positive views about teachers' unions, despite union action being a driving factor in recent strikes. Just under half of Americans, 48 percent, say teachers' unions improve the quality of public education, while a majority of Americans (66 percent) say unions make it harder to fire bad teachers.
The poll's release follows strikes in Arizona, Colorado, West Virginia and other states where teachers demanded concessions from state lawmakers including higher pay and a strengthening of healthcare benefits, among other demands.
Many of the strikes occurred in Republican-held states, where support for unions is typically lower than blue states.
The USA Today/Ipsos poll was conducted between Aug. 9-13, and contacted roughly 2,010 U.S. adults. The poll, conducted online, contains a credibility interval of 4 percentage points.