Two-thirds of Americans worry states will lift restrictions on public activity too quickly: poll

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About two-thirds of Americans worry that state governments will lift their restrictions on public activity too quickly following the coronavirus outbreak, according to a poll released Thursday.

Pew Research Center’s poll found 66 percent of respondents were concerned states will reopen public activity too quickly, compared to 32 percent who are more concerned they won’t reopen quickly enough.

An overwhelming majority of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents in the poll, 81 percent, said they were concerned about a premature reopening of public life, while Republican respondents were more split.

Fifty-one percent of Republicans and GOP-leaning independents said they were worried that state governments will allow public activity to resume too early, compared to 48 percent who are concerned the restrictions will not be lifted early enough.

The poll comes as some residents and politicians across the country are calling for an end to the stay-at-home orders that limit public interaction during the pandemic. Protests erupted in Michigan on Wednesday, with hundreds calling for restrictions to end and for the economy to restart, with some residents filing lawsuits against Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D).

President Trump has requested Americans maintain social distancing through April 30. A draft administration plan calls for a “phased reopening” of the economy starting “not before May 1.”

Almost two-thirds of respondents in the Pew poll, 65 percent, said they thought Trump responded too slowly to the coronavirus pandemic, while 34 percent said he reacted quickly.

Still, the president’s approval rating remains at one of the highest points during his presidency, with a total of 44 percent saying they approve of the president while 53 percent disapprove.

The president has defended his administration’s response time to the virus, citing his Jan. 31 ban on some travel from China. But his critics have slammed Trump for not taking broader domestic action earlier in the pandemic, including criticizing the slow pace of testing.

The Pew Research Center poll was conducted April 7-12 with 4,917 U.S. adult respondents from its American Trends Panel. The margin of error is 2.1 percentage points.

Tags Coronavirus coronavirus polls COVID-19 Donald Trump Pew Research Center polls reopening economy stay-at-home orders

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