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Infographic: U.S. Public Supports Lockdown

Chart: support for lockdowns


14 Nov. 2020. With Covid-19 cases in the U.S. accelerating in the past few weeks, a recent poll shows the public clearly favors a lockdown to stop the rise. The findings are part of a survey conducted by the market research company YouGov and displayed this week by business analytics company Statista.

Without vaccines or easily accessible therapeutics, public health authorities today have few tools to stop the spread of Covid-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Early in the pandemic, nearly all U.S. states ordered most businesses to close as hospitals became flooded with the first wave of cases. Because of the painful economic effects from the first lockdown, many governors and legislatures are reluctant to ask businesses to close again, even as Covid-19 cases now far eclipse levels seen in the spring.

On 30 Oct., YouGov asked its online survey panel in the U.S. about support for business closures like those ordered in the spring. The question read, “Would you support or oppose your state instituting a 1-month lockdown (meaning only essential businesses would be allowed to be open) to limit the spread of the coronavirus?”

Results show, by more than two-to one margin, U.S. adults support (64%) a one-month lockdown to control the spread of Covid-19 infections, than oppose (29%). To no one’s surprise, the responses show sharp partisan differences. Nearly nine in 10 Democrats (87%) support a one-month lockdown, while almost two-thirds (64%) of Republicans are opposed. The split among independents (58% in favor, 35% oppose) is similar to the public at large. On a follow-up question, about a quarter of respondents (27%) consider a lockdown a violation of constitutional rights, while six in 10 (60%) believe a lockdown is constitutional.

YouGov recruits a representative panel of about 2 million residents in the U.S. to take part in online surveys. The 30 Oct. survey had 12,764 adult respondents.

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