A majority of Americans are concerned about having access to vote rather than preventing voter fraud, according to an NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll released Friday.

When it comes to priority in voting laws, 56 percent of respondents said the priority should be “making sure that everyone who wants to vote can do so.”

By comparison, 41 percent said that the focus should be “making sure that no one votes who is not eligible.”


The survey found stark partisan differences in responses. Eighty-five percent of respondents who identified as Democrats and 52 percent of those who identified as independents favor voting access, compared to 72 percent of those identifying as Republicans saying that making sure that no one who is ineligible to vote does is their highest priority.

The poll comes as the battle over voting rights heats up as GOP-led states move to pass sweeping voting reforms tightening up rules at the ballot box.

Multiple states, such as Georgia, Arizona and Florida, have passed controversial laws aimed at reigning in voting. The Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that a pair of GOP-backed Arizona restrictions could remain in place.

However, the poll found broad agreement over whether to require voter ID. Seventy-nine percent of respondents said they supported requiring government-issued photo identification in order to vote.

This was supported by 94 percent of Republicans, 83 percent of independents, and 57 percent of Democrats.

The response to voter ID was in line with a Monmouth University poll released last month, which found that 80 percent of respondents supported requiring photo identification.

The survey of 1,115 adults was conducted by the Marist Poll June 22-29. The margin of sampling error is 3.7 percentage points.