A new poll suggests Floridians support bold policy in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and fear they have yet to see the pandemic’s worst effects.
The poll, commissioned by State Innovation Exchange, also shows Floridians remain fearful of the pandemic’s impact on their health, the economy and the election.
“As Florida’s primary elections approach, voters are concerned about the accessibility and safety of our election in the midst of this pandemic,” said SiX Florida State Director James Chan.
Survey data shows Florida voters support several actions to ensure a safe and accessible election.
Among them, 84% support additional polling locations to reduce crowding, 82% support an extended early voting window and 71% encourage policy that would allow registered voters to cast a ballot at any polling location in their county.
The poll also showed Florida voters split on how they intend to vote. According to poll data, 52% of Floridians will vote by mail while 47% said they intend to vote in person.
Notably, 79% of Floridians said they fear they will contract the virus and die.
“No eligible voter should be forced to choose between their health and their vote,” Chan said. “We need our elected officials to take action.”
Economics remains a major concern for Floridians. Of those polled, 84% are concerned about people losing work or income due to the virus. The same percentage also fear small businesses and restaurants may close down permanently. More personally, 71% said they feel forced to choose between their health and their job.
Florida is more than five months removed from when officials first reported COVID-19 diagnoses on March 1. But last week was the deadliest week of the pandemic, with 1,245 fatalities among Floridians.
With those 245 resident deaths reported Tuesday on top of 62 Sunday and 73 Monday, the state is now outpacing last week’s death toll. But while mortality continues to trend upward, new cases are in decline. Tuesday brought 5,446 diagnoses and raised the state’s caseload to 497,330, which includes 5,557 non-residents.