• Focus Groups
  • Polling

As Pandemic Pessimism Declines Broadly, Mothers and Educators Remain Anxious

Wednesday, September 29, 2021 By Bryan Bennett
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Welcome to NAVIGATOR – a project designed to better understand the American public’s views on issues of the day and help advocates, elected officials, and other interested parties understand the language, imagery, and messaging needed to make and win key policy arguments.

Key takeaways from the focus groups

  • Eighteen months in, people see the country through the lens of COVID-19.
  • Parents and teachers face regular trauma and anxiety of managing kids during the age of COVID-19.
  • Most struggle with a lack of trust and the inconsistency in COVID-19 advice, information, and policies.
  • Even Trump voters in Texas and Florida feel Governors Abbott and DeSantis have let them down.

The State Of The Country Is Largely Seen Through The Lens Of COVID-19

Parenting And Teaching During COVID-19 Produces Trauma, Guilt, Fear, And Anxiety

Across The Board, People Are Bombarded With Alerts About Exposures At School

In Nevada, Anti-Mask Moms Balance Strong Views With COVID-19 Fears And Social Pressure

Most Struggle With A Lack Of Trust In Medical Guidance And COVID-19 Facts

Some Try To Explain The Link Between Party Views And COVID-19 Views

Texas And Florida Respondents Rail Against Abbott And DeSantis

Key takeaways from the survey

  • Biden and the Democratic Party continue to be more trusted to handle pandemic-related issues than the Republican Party.
  • Nearly three in five Americans support vaccine mandates broadly, and even more support vaccine requirements for domestic air travel.
  • The greatest concerns Americans have about opponents of vaccine mandates are their prolonging of the pandemic, putting children’s lives at risk, and failing to keep others safe.

The Lowest Share Since July Say the “Worst Is Yet to Come” in the Pandemic

Just one in three Republicans (33%) say the “worst is yet to come” in the pandemic, as do 44% of Democrats and 46% of independents.

Biden and Democrats Continue to Be More Trusted on Pandemic-Related Issues Than Republicans

Among independents, Biden and Democrats are more trusted by 21 points to ensure enough people are vaccinated against coronavirus and by 20 points to combat the pandemic.

Nearly Half Continue to Say Biden Is Doing Enough on Pandemic, While Congressional Republicans Not Enough

More than one in four Republicans (27%) say Biden is doing enough to get the United States past the pandemic, and nearly the same share say Republicans in Congress are not doing enough (24%).

A Majority Support Vaccine Mandates for Federal Workers, Health Care Workers, and Employees of Larger Businesses

Nearly half of independents (48%) support vaccine mandates.

Three in Five Americans Support Domestic Airlines Requiring Proof of Vaccination

Half of independents (50%) and two in five Republicans support requiring proof of vaccination for travel on domestic airplanes.

Those Who Oppose Vaccine Mandates Seen as Prolonging Pandemic, Endangering Children, Failing to Keep Others Safe

Democrats and independents find prolonging of the pandemic and putting children’s lives at risk most concerning; for Republicans, endangering children and hurting our economic recovery are most concerning.

Biden Approval Remains Evenly Split

Since August 30th, Americans remain evenly split on Biden’s approval rating.

About The Study

This release features findings from three focus groups conducted on September 21, 2021 with voters in three states: Florida (mothers who opposed DeSantis’ rules on masks in schools), Texas teachers and educators, and Nevada (mothers who opposed Sisolak’s rules on masks in schools). Qualitative results are not statistically projectable.

This release also features findings from a national online survey of 1,000 registered voters conducted September 23-27, 2021. Additional interviews were conducted among 101 Hispanic voters, 100 African American voters, 101 independents without a partisan lean, and 77 Asian American and Pacific Islander voters.

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About Navigator

In a world where the news cycle is the length of a tweet, our leaders often lack the real-time public-sentiment analysis to shape the best approaches to talking about the issues that matter the most. Navigator is designed to act as a consistent, flexible, responsive tool to inform policy debates by conducting research and reliable guidance to inform allies, elected leaders, and the press. Navigator is a project led by pollsters from Global Strategy Group and GBAO along with an advisory committee, including: Andrea Purse, progressive strategist; Arkadi Gerney, The Hub Project; Joel Payne, The Hub Project; Christina Reynolds, EMILY’s List; Delvone Michael, Working Families; Felicia Wong, Roosevelt Institute; Mike Podhorzer, AFL-CIO; Jesse Ferguson, progressive strategist; Navin Nayak, Center for American Progress Action Fund; Stephanie Valencia, EquisLabs; and Melanie Newman, Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

For press inquiries contact: press@navigatorresearch.org