In the wake of the enactment of the American Rescue Plan, which provides COVID-19 economic relief to Americans across the country, Democrats are eyeing an infrastructure spending package that would include federal money for efforts like road repairs and clean energy. In a new Data for Progress/ Invest in America survey, a full 57 percent of overall respondents indicated that they’re in favor of “a large infrastructure bill,” with just 35 percent of overall respondents indicating their opposition. A full 35 percent of Republican respondents joined those in favor of the move, while 56 percent were against.
Build Back Better is popular.
Like, really popular.
— Data for Progress (@DataProgress) March 23, 2021
Support was higher on more particularized questions. A full 87 percent of overall respondents indicated that they were in favor of funding road repairs, for instance, and 85 percent of overall respondents indicated that they supported funding repairs to drinking water systems. Other possible spending areas that were part of the survey included expansions of broadband internet infrastructure, “modernizing the electric grid” through clean energy, “cleaning up mines and abandoned gas wells,” and more, and every measure garnered support from a majority of overall respondents.
When the survey questioned respondents about a list of possible spending areas instead of the broad idea of a “large infrastructure bill,” support was higher, suggesting that Democrats could garner additional public approval for their efforts via focusing on particular policy moves. When presented with a list of specific proposals, a full 69 percent of overall respondents indicated that they supported the overall “Build Back Better” plan, with just 22 percent of overall respondents indicating opposition. Those in favor included 50 percent of Republicans, with just 42 percent expressing their opposition.
The high levels of support for prospective provisions of a federal infrastructure spending package mirror the high support that the recently enacted COVID-19 economic relief has garnered from people across the country. In a recently released POLITICO/ Morning Consult survey, a full 72 percent of overall respondents indicated that they were in favor of the COVID-19 relief — although not a single Republican in Congress voted in favor of the aid. Ahead of the upcoming midterm elections, Republicans might need to explain to voters why they united in opposition of the widely popular assistance.