- More than eight in ten adults agree that the country should provide monthly stimulus checks to citizens until the outbreak ends.
- While 30% of Americans agree that President Trump was unprepared at the outset of the pandemic, 62% think he’s handled the crisis well overall.
LONDON — A recent survey shows how the opinions of the American public have changed over the course of the coronavirus pandemic when it comes to the federal government’s role in one’s health and financial status. Most Americans feel that now, perhaps more than ever before, the country must improve the way it cares for citizens who are unwell and provides for those who are most in need.
The survey of 2,000 adults was conducted by OnePoll over the last few days of April — right when many states were beginning to lift some of the restrictions they put in place at the start of the pandemic. More than three-quarters of respondents agreed that now is the right time for the country to experiment with universal healthcare. Additionally, 76% of respondents feel that people who contract COVID-19 shouldn’t be charged for their medical expenses at all.
Further analysis shows that interest in moving towards a universal healthcare system doesn’t vary too much by political affiliation. In fact, 74% of self-identified Republicans and 84% of self-identified Democrats agreed that the country should institute such a system in response to the pandemic.
Moreover, 81% also believe that insurance companies should cover all COVID-19 related expenses.
It’s possible that this sentiment is shared by many Americans because many people do not know how they would pay for their own medical expenses should they contract COVID-19. Sixty-five percent of respondents fear the economic burden they would face should they get infected. Perhaps that’s why the majority of Americans think the government needs to provide more financial security for its constituents, too.
A whopping 82% of people feel that the one-time stimulus check of $1,200 is not enough to cover their expenses. They feel that these checks should continue until the lockdown ends. Many respondents also think that elected official should find ways to relieve some of the economic burdens people are facing during this time. Among popular ideas, 55% believe that mortgage and rent payments should be frozen during this time. Another 63% say student loan companies should freeze interest rates and payments.
Respondents also largely felt the country should especially try and help those who lost their jobs as a result of the pandemic. Nearly eight in ten (79%) respondents agreed that the feds need to do more to protect those who have become unemployed. That said, only 58% think who have lost their jobs should receive more federal financial support.
Despite all the ways federal officials could do a better job, the majority of people gave positive marks to our leaders for their efforts thus far. In all, 64% of respondents believe that the government has handled the COVID-19 pandemic well, and about half of those say the government has responded “very well.” Interestingly, 36% think that their state governments have handled the situation best, compared to just 26% who feel the federal government has been better than individual states.
Meanwhile, 30% of those polled think President Trump was unprepared at the beginning of the pandemic, but 62% think that he has handled the crisis well overall. However, 72% think it was a mistake for the president to scale down the global health security and biodefense section of the National Security Council.