The Ritz Herald
A man walks through the U.S. Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC. © Chip Somodevilla

Americans Torn Between Concerns for Health & Safety and Economic Recovery

At a time when 40 out of 50 states are reporting a surge in COVID-19 cases, Americans struggle to weigh the cost in lives and livelihood

Published on July 04, 2020

A recent survey by ROI Rocket, a leading market research-based consultancy, reveals a country deeply conflicted by the dual goals of fighting the spread of the coronavirus and re-opening the economy.

According to this poll, about two in five Americans (39%) are equally concerned about health & safety and the economy, with about one in three (31%) strongly favoring the former and about 15% strongly favoring the latter. This dilemma splits predictably along partisan lines. More than two in five Democrats (44%) fall into the health & safety camp compared to less than half as many Republicans (19%) and about one in four Independents (28%). On the flipside, about one in five Republicans (22%) fall into the economic growth camp compared to only 9% of Democrats and 16% of Independents.

Regardless of political party, however, concerns about contracting the virus are on the rise. The number of Americans ‘extremely concerned’ about getting infected is at its highest level since the third week in May—just after the initial wave of community re-openings. About 35% now report being ‘extremely concerned’ about contracting COVID-19, not coincidentally, the same percentage who believe life won’t be back to normal until a year or more has passed.

Many chalk up the extended pandemic to an inadequate government response. More than one in four (29%) believe strongly that the government response to the crisis has been less than what the situation requires while only 12% harbor the belief that the government’s done more than circumstances require. Democrats are more likely than Republicans to be disappointed in the government’s actions to combat the virus. More than two in five Democrats (45%) feel this way compared to only 9% of Republicans.

The results of this poll show Americans are divided on the proper aims of government policy and their level of trust in government to achieve them. Meanwhile, to a growing number of people, the future looks increasingly grim.

Executive Editor