Exclusive Poll: Americans more concerned with finances than health amid coronavirus pandemic

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DALLAS (NEXSTAR) – Our exclusive poll of 1,100 people across the country found that most respondents are more concerned about their finances than their personal health during the current coronavirus pandemic.

When asked about their personal finances, 42% of respondents said they were “very concerned” and another 36% said they were “somewhat concerned.” The issue of finances slightly outweighed personal medical concerns. 26% of respondents were “very concerned” about their personal health, while 41% are “somewhat concerned.”

When asked if they were worried they or an immediate family member may catch the coronavirus, 70% were very worried or somewhat worried. Only 22% reported being not too worried and 7% are not worried at all.

When asking about the country’s response to the pandemic, 49% approve of the job President Donald Trump is doing in handling the response to the coronavirus, with 41% disapproving.

Trump’s response percentage is slightly higher than his overall approval rating for the job he’s doing as president. The poll showed 46% of Americans approve of his work in the White House.

“Voters appear to have a stronger approval for President Trump’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak than his general approval as president,” said Spencer Kimball, Director of Emerson College Polling. “This suggests during this crisis when voters are looking for strong leadership, the president has an opportunity to win over some of his opposition.”

A slight majority of the country (51%) believes the United States is doing everything it can to combat the coronavirus, while 49% of respondents believe more should be done.

As it relates to the ability of local hospitals to respond effectively to the virus, 44% of voters are somewhat confident, while 19% reported being very confident. In contrast, 29% said they are not so confident; 9% are not confident at all.

The poll also examined the Democratic primary and found Vice President Joe Biden with a double-digit lead over Senator Bernie Sanders. Biden receives 54% support compared to Sanders at 42%. The poll also included Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, as it was conducted before she dropped out of the race, and she received 4% support.

Poll Background

The March National Emerson College/Nexstar poll was conducted March 18-19, 2020. The sample consisted of registered Democratic, Republican, and Independent voters, n=1,100, with a Credibility Interval (CI) similar to a poll’s margin of error (MOE) of +/- 2.9 percentage points. The data sets were weighted by gender, age, ethnicity, education, and region. It is important to remember that subsets based on gender, age, party breakdown, ethnicity, and region carry with them higher margins of error, as the sample size is reduced. Data was collected using an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system of landlines (n=645) and an online panel provided by MTurk (n=455).

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