Rachel Bitecofer at the Niskanen Center:
Poll shows rural voters oppose USPS cuts
In selected rural, Republican districts in Battlefield PA, voters say they are less likely to back a candidate who supports defunding or privatizing the U.S Postal Service. Mail-in voting and in-person school show a sharp partisan split.
Despite a party breakdown of 56% Republican, 34% Democrat in this survey, reflecting the rural Pennsylvania congressional districts sampled, 57% of these likely 2020 voters report they’d be less likely to support a candidate who reduced the budget for the U.S Postal Service, or privatized the agency, including 43% of Republicans.
- 52% of these likely voters report they are “not likely at all” to vote by mail this fall, driven almost entirely by Republican voters’ strong rejection of the option. 68% of Republicans report they are “not at all likely” to vote by mail while 53% of Democrats say they are “very likely.”
- 53% of rural voters say they are “very” or “somewhat” reliant on USPS service. Rural Republicans profess much less reliance on USPS than rural Democrats -- just 17% of Republicans report being “very” reliant while 43% of “Democrats” say the same, indicating a party effect.
- 51% of rural voters report being “concerned” about changes at USPS. Partisanship exerts strong influence over rural voter attitudes. 63% of Republicans report they are “not at all concerned” by changes at USPS while 71% of Democrats are “very concerned.”
- 62% of rural voters approve of President Trump’s handling of the pandemic, driven by the disproportionate number of Republicans in these rural districts, and the high marks Republicans give him. With a similar partisan effect, rural voters rate the performance of their elected state officials, who are Democrats, much lower, as just 44% approve.
- 47% of these rural voters support in-person, 5-day-a-week school this fall, with a sharp partisan divide on the issue. Just 4% of Republicans support “online only,” while only 17% of Democrats endorse full-week, in-person classes.