Oklahomans are willing to stay “safer at home” for a while, but that resolve could weaken the longer the COVID-19 pandemic plays out, according to a poll released Sunday.
Amber Integrated surveyed 500 likely Oklahoma voters April 1 and April 2, finding that 86 percent of respondents said they were sheltering in place. Further, 85 percent of those surveyed support Gov. Kevin Stitt’s “safer-at-home” policy that has closed non-essential businesses and ordered older citizens to stay at home.
But how long that resolve will hold up depends on party affiliation, with 51 percent of those surveyed believing it will take three months or more to return to normalcy.
Among Democrats surveyed, 62 percent predict a three-month or longer timeline before normalcy returns, but only 44 percent of Republicans and 43 percent of independents surveyed believe it will take that long.
Only 19 percent of voters said they would support policies that force businesses to close beyond June. Find the full poll below.
Permanent lifestyle changes expected
Oklahomans surveyed believe the virus will result in long-term lifestyle changes. Fifty-five percent said they believe students will be more likely to pursue distance learning in the future, and 58 percent believe more people will opt for takeout and home delivery services for food and shopping. And 53 percent of respondents said they would be more likely to use telemedicine.
The $2 trillion federal CARES Act — which provides an array of assistance for individuals and business owners to cope with the economic blow of the virus — is also popular, with 85 percent of respondents approving of the measure.
Approval for Stitt, Trump
While some recent polls have shown the public view of President Donald Trump’s administration growing more critical nationally, Oklahomans still approve of the job both he and Gov. Kevin Stitt are doing to manage the crisis.
According to the Amber Integrated poll, 62 percent of likely voters approve of the Trump administration’s handling of the crisis. Those numbers broke down along party lines, with 89 percent of Republicans approving but just 28 percent of Democrats approving.
Despite some criticism of his decision to take his family to a crowded public space during the early days of the pandemic, Stitt’s job of handling the pandemic received 69 percent support from those surveyed. Stitt has the support of 85 percent of Republicans surveyed, but he also received approval from a majority of Democrats: 52 percent.
“You have 69 percent of the citizens of the State of Oklahoma that are happy with the way Gov. Stitt is handling the pandemic,” House Majority Floor Leader Jon Echols (R-OKC) said in an interview today. “It’s not because 69 percent of the state of Oklahoma would do everything Gov. Stitt did, it’s because 69 percent of the state of Oklahoma thinks, as a whole, he’s handling it as well as he can handle it.”
Health care professionals popular, national media not so much
About 85 percent of those surveyed have a positive view of Oklahoma’s hospitals.
The state government overall’s handling of COVID-19 has the approval of 74 percent of voters, and federal agencies like the CDC are supported by 73 percent of those surveyed.
Oklahomans like the job its state-based media are doing in covering the pandemic with 71 percent approval. National media has a 49 percent approval.
Despite the passage of a $2 trillion rescue package, Congress is underwater in the view of those surveyed, with just 44 percent approving of the job it is doing. The Oklahoma Legislature has 61 percent approval for the job it is doing to combat the pandemic.