Plurality of voters say U.S. coronavirus measures are not strict enough: poll

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A plurality of voters say measures to control the spread of the coronavirus in the U.S. have not been strict enough, according to a new Harvard CAPS/Harris poll released exclusively to The Hill.

Forty-five percent of voters say that measures have not been strict enough, while 38 percent of those surveyed called the restrictions “reasonable.” Eighteen percent said the restrictions were “too strict.”

Additionally, 80 percent of respondents said they supported a national mask mandate, while 20 percent said they opposed such a measure.

The findings come as coronavirus cases climb in states across the country as the U.S. enters the colder months of fall and winter and flu season.

The U.S. set a new record for coronavirus cases averaged over a seven-day period on Sunday at 68,954 infections, according to the COVID Tracking Project. 

In New Jersey, the state’s department of health reported 1,010 COVID-19 hospitalizations, 194 patients in intensive care and 80 people on ventilators. The state previously logged 1,028 hospitalizations on July 2.

Despite the growing number of cases nationwide, President Trump has insisted the U.S. is “rounding the corner” on the pandemic.

However, the Harvard CAPS/Harris poll found that 77 percent of respondents said they believed coronavirus cases were growing faster, while only 23 percent said they were slowing down.

“Voters overwhelming support masks and think and that the response has not been strict enough, blaming Trump for that lack of response and believing Biden would have been tougher,” said pollster Mark Penn. “Despite this however, they do not want to go back to new lockdowns.”

The Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll online survey of 2,093 registered voters was conducted Oct. 27-28. It is a collaboration of the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard University and The Harris Poll. The Hill will be working with Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll throughout 2020.

Full poll results will be posted online later this week. The survey is an online sample drawn from the Harris Panel and weighted to reflect known demographics. As a representative online sample, it does not report a probability confidence interval.

Tags Donald Trump Mark Penn

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