MRG: Poll shows 75 percent of Voters oppose 45 cent tax increase

Poll shows 75 percent of Voters oppose 45 cent tax increase

Alternative plan to designate sales tax on gas to roads is also stalled

LANSING, Mich. – Seventy-five percent of Michigan voters say they oppose Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s proposal to raise the gas tax by forty-five cents, according to the latest statewide poll conducted by Marketing Resource Group (MRG). More than sixty percent of the voters said they strongly opposed the tax increase proposal.

 

Every geographic area and every demographic and political group of voters opposed the measure. Only 21 percent of the voters supported the proposal with the strongest support coming from Detroit voters at 46 percent, while 51 percent are still opposing.

 

Politically, the Republicans were the strongest in opposition with 89 percent against the tax. The Governor doesn’t have the support of the Democrats either, as 59 percent oppose and only 36 percent support.

 

Geographically, the strongest opposition came from voters in Macomb County, West Michigan, Northern Michigan and the Upper Peninsula where over 80 percent opposed. Men and women, union and non-union, were equally opposed.

 

“Gov. Whitmer’s first major proposal has united Republicans and Democrats, men and women, young and old, union and non-union, rural, suburban and urban voters in their opposition,” said Tom Shields, President of MRG. “The voters still want their roads fixed but they are not supporting this 45 cent gas tax increase to pay for it. It’s back to the drawing board.”

 

Sales tax at the pump proposal is also sputtering

 

MRG also asked the voters if they would be in support of the proposal to designate the six percent sales tax collected at the pump on gasoline to road funding instead of the school aid fund. The voters were split on that proposal with 39 percent supporting and 41 percent opposing. Republicans and Democrats were divided on the proposal with 51 percent of the Republicans supporting compared to only 29 percent of the Democrats. The Independents were equally divided at 40 percent supporting and opposing.

 

The actual wording of the gas tax question is below:

 

As you know, Governor Whitmer has proposed a 45 cent per gallon increase in the state’s gasoline tax to raise additional funds to repair the roads. As of today, do you support or oppose the proposed 45 cent per gallon gasoline tax increase? [IF SUPPORT/ OPPOSE, ASK:] Would that be strongly (SUPPORT / OPPOSE) or just somewhat (SUPPORT / OPPOSE)?

 

Strongly Support……………………………………… 8.5%

Somewhat Support…………………………………… 12.7%

Neither (VOLUNTEERED) ……………………….. 3.3%

Somewhat Oppose…………………………………… 14.2%

Strongly Oppose……………………………………… 60.7%

Don’t Know…………………………………………….. 0.7%

Refused…………………………………………………….. .. 0%

 

TOTAL SUPPORT………………………………… 21.2%

TOTAL OPPOSE………………………………….. 74.9%

 

Party Identification

 

  Democrat Independent Republican
Strongly Support 14% 8% 3%
Somewhat Support 22% 9% 7%
Total Support 36% 17% 10%
Somewhat Oppose 18% 13% 11%
Strongly Oppose 40% 65% 78%
Total Oppose 58% 78% 89%

 

Age

 

18-34 35-44 45-64 65+
Strongly Support 11% 10% 9% 5%
Somewhat Support 19% 15% 10% 13%
Total Support 30% 25% 19% 18%
Somewhat Oppose 18% 9% 14% 16%
Strongly Oppose 47% 62% 65% 62%
Total Oppose 65% 71% 79% 78%

 

Geographic Location

 

City of Detroit Balance of Wayne County Oakland County Macomb County Balance of Detroit SMSA Mid-Michigan West Michigan Tri-Cities/Thumb North Lower Michigan Upper Peninsula
Strongly Support 11% 7% 13% 4% 11% 11% 7% 11% 4% 0%
Somewhat Support 35% 11% 15% 12% 16% 11% 9% 9% 7% 17%
Total Support 46% 18% 28% 16% 27% 22% 16% 20% 11% 17%
Somewhat Oppose 17% 15% 18% 19% 8% 15% 12% 16% 9% 11%
Strongly Oppose 34% 63% 50% 62% 60% 61% 69% 60% 74% 72%
Total Oppose 51% 78% 68% 81% 68% 76% 81% 76% 83% 83%

 

Sales Tax on Gas for Roads question:

 

As you know there is a 6% sales tax on gasoline that is collected at the pump. None of that 6% goes to repair the roads. Instead it goes to schools. This equates to nearly $1 Billion collected at the pump that doesn’t go to roads but goes to schools instead. Would you support an infrastructure plan that does not raise the gas tax, but instead dedicates this additional $1 Billion from the sales tax on gasoline to roads and not to the school aid fund? [IF FAVOR/OPPOSE, ASK: “Would that be strongly or somewhat (favor/ oppose)?” AND CODE BEST RESPONSE]

 

Strongly favor ………………………………………….  23.8%

Somewhat Favor…………………………………….. 15.2%

Neither Favor / Oppose (VOL) …….  11.2%

Somewhat Oppose …………………………………..  8.8%

Strongly Oppose …………………………………….  32.2%

Don’t Know ………………………………………………….  8.7%

Refused …………………………………………………………..  0.2%

 

Total Favor ………………………………. 39.0%

                  Total Oppose ……………………………. 41.0%

 

If anyone in the media would like additional numbers or cross tabs, please do not hesitate to contact us.

MRG Michigan Poll Spring 2019

The survey of 600 likely Michigan voters was conducted by live interview April 9-13, 2019. The sample was randomly drawn from a listed sample of all registered voters with a history of voting and stratified by city and township to reflect voter turnout. 30% of the sample was conducted with cell phone users. In addition, quotas for gender and cell phone interviews were met within each geographic area, and extra efforts were made to reach African Americans. Thirty percent of the interviews were conducted with cell phone only or cell phone dominant households. These questions on the gas tax and road funding were a part of the 2019 Spring Michigan Poll® and were not commissioned by any outside 3rd party groups.

A sample of 600 likely voters in Michigan yields a sampling margin of error of ±4 percent with a 95 percent confidence interval. The sampling margin of error for subgroups may be higher depending on the size of the subgroup.

About Marketing Resource Group, Inc.

Lansing, Michigan-based Marketing Resource Group, Inc. (www.mrgmi.com) is an award-winning PR firm representing corporate, association, nonprofit, and private clients with interests in Michigan. MRG offers expertise in public affairs, communications, political campaign management, and public opinion survey research. For more than thirty years, MRG has conducted its bi-annual omnibus Michigan Poll®, tracking the pulse of Michigan voters on key statewide public policy and political issues. MRG is the only Michigan public opinion survey research firm that maintains nearly 35 years of trend analyses of voter attitudes related to state and national leaders, political parties, and the political and economic climate in Michigan.

Follow MRG on Twitter @mrgmichigan and on Facebook.

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