Biden climate plan polls well

Source: By Adam Aton, E&E News reporter • Posted: Sunday, August 9, 2020

Democrat Joe Biden’s climate plan looks like a winner in the states that could decide control of the White House and Senate, according to polling from a left-leaning group.

Given a choice between an electricity system that decarbonizes by 2035 or one that delivers the cheapest possible electricity, regardless of the source, voters in four battleground states chose deadline-driven emissions reductions by double-digit margins, according to polling by the think tank Data for Progress.

Arizona, Iowa, Maine and North Carolina voters collectively backed the 2035 deadline by a 15-point margin. The poll found that 50% of voters supported it and 35% didn’t.

Broken down by state, Biden’s proposed 2035 deadline for net-zero emissions in the electricity sector registered majority support in Arizona, Maine and Iowa, and it got a 48% plurality in North Carolina. Opposition registered between 31% and 38%.

Biden’s plan to invest $2 trillion in climate action over four years also polled well. After hearing a short description of Biden’s plan, as well as a Republican counterpoint about preserving fossil fuel jobs, voters in each of the battleground states gave it majority support. It registered 53% cumulative support in those states while 33% were opposed.

The poll also found overwhelming support for earmarking 40% of climate investments for low-income communities, as Biden’s plan calls for.

The poll found 63% of voters across the battleground states supported that policy and 19% opposed it. Support topped 60% in each state.

Similar support was found for an “equity screen” designed to prioritize federal climate investments in the places that need it most.

A 41% plurality of voters thought Congress should make climate change a priority on the first day of its next term.

The polling also found Biden leading President Trump in Arizona, Maine and North Carolina, while Trump was slightly ahead in Iowa. Democratic Senate candidates were leading Republican incumbents in all four states, according to the poll.

Poll questions had margins of error of 3 to 6 percentage points. The surveys were conducted from July 24 to Sunday, using web panels and text-to-web. Respondents were weighted by age, gender, education, race and voting history.