WASHINGTON – As congressional Democrats put the finishing touches on the American Rescue Plan — a $1.9 trillion economic relief package — new polls reveal most Americans support the raft of policies
Notably, polls find broad Republican support for the provisions of the stimulus package. Polling by Politico/Morning Consult conducted from March 6-8 finds 59% of Republicans at least somewhat support the $1.9 trillion stimulus package. A Tuesday Pew Research poll also found 41% of Republicans supporting the bill.
A CNN poll released Wednesday finds 61% of Americans overall support the relief package and 66% say it would help the economy in some way. The poll, conducted among 1,009 adults from March 3-8, also found majority support for most of the individual policies included in the bill, including larger tax credits for families at 85%; funding for K-12 schools at 77%; and $350 billion in aid to state and local governments at 59%.
The Politico/Morning Consult poll found 75% of registered voters either strongly or somewhat support the package. A majority likes the scope of the package: 45% of those polled say the bill’s provisions offer the right amount of support, while 24% believe it offers too little. The poll found just 21% think the bill offers too much.
The Pew poll similarly found 41% of Americans see the size of the package as about right, while 25% say it is too small. That poll also found 70% of adults support the legislation, including 41% of self-identified Republicans. The poll, conducted among 12,055 adults between March 1-7, also found that 57% of the public believes the Biden administration made a good faith effort to work with Republicans.
The data from a range of pollsters depicts an American public approving of direct and historically large government interventions, indicating a possible sea change in the nation’s political dynamics.
The bill, which was first passed along partisan lines in Congress, is being touted by Democrats as a popular and necessary response to the economic and public health fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.
Congressional Republicans have sought to paint Democrats as uncompromising and the bill as too large. Most Americans, however, do not seem to agree, according to the Politico/Morning Consult poll, which was conducted among 1,990 registered voters in early March. A plurality or majority of the public trusts congressional Democrats more on every major issue polled, including the economy, health care, responding to the pandemic and even national security, that poll found.
Biden’s job approval
President Joe Biden is also enjoying a positive approval rating as the package heads to his desk.
A FiveThirtyEight aggregate of polls finds Biden’s approval rating sits at 53.4% approving and 38.8% disapproving.
Specifically, on his response to the pandemic, approval ratings are even higher; a Sunday ABC News/Ipsos poll of 521 adults found support for Biden’s strategy on the pandemic at 68%. An Associated Press/NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll conducted from Feb. 25-March 1 among 1,434 adults also found 70% support for Biden’s approach to the pandemic.
Democrats have already begun to tout the popularity of the bill as Biden’s first major legislative win. Biden and other senior Democrats have indicated they will be focused on communicating the significance of the relief package as they work to implement its many provisions.
“One of the — if not the biggest — mistakes that Obama made, in my opinion, was getting the Recovery Act done and not explaining to people what he had done,” House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., said Tuesday, implying Democrats would not make the same missteps as the last time they oversaw an economic stimulus in 2009.
“Look, the bottom line is this: This plan puts us on a path to beating the virus. This plan gives those families who are struggling the most — the help and breathing room they need to get through this moment,” Biden told reporters in Saturday remarks after the bill passed the Senate.