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Baldwin Wallace University Poll shows high anxiety in Ohio and other Midwest states caused by COVID-19 pandemic

Majority of voters believe the virus is a "real threat" and that the worst is yet to come.

BEREA, Ohio — Baldwin Wallace University's Community Research Institute along with Oakland University and Ohio Northern University polled registered voters in Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. The 2020 Great Lakes Poll questioned participants on opinions about the current COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 election, approval ratings for the government's handling of the crisis and more. 

The 2020 Great Lakes Poll which was created to study voter opinions in Ohio and the three other Midwest States, showed that a significant amount of voters say that the coronavirus is a "real threat" With this, the survey showed that voters were in agreement with the restrictions placed in their states, including the closings of schools, bars, and restaurants. 

“Although Democrats and Republicans haven’t agreed on much in recent years, there is startling agreement when it comes to the restrictions put in place by their respective governors. However, differences emerge between partisans when it comes to their personal concern and behaviors in response to the coronavirus," says Ohio Northern political science professor Dr. Robert Alexander.

More than half of the respondents from the poll approve of how their individual governors have handled the current COVID-19 pandemic. Approval for how the President is dealing with the concern was not as high, but still in a slight majority. In Ohio, voters are in favor of Governor Mike DeWine's non-political response in handling the pandemic based on the advice of medical experts. 

In comparison to the first Great Lakes poll conducted, approval for the President's overall job performance has improved. However, approval for specific issues such are the economy and health care are not as strong. 

The survey also showed that health care has become the most important issue to voters. This is assumed to be due to the current health situation. Issues dealing with the economy took second importance due to the fact that voters are concerned about the effect of the pandemic on their personal finances. 

“It’s best to understand the political polling results in the context of uncertainty surrounding COVID-19.” says Lauren Copeland, associate director of the Baldwin Wallace Community Research Institute.

Majority of respondents in each state also believe that the worst is yet to come, with 80 percent saying that they have changed their daily routines, 75 percent saying they are avoiding contact with people, and between 80 to 85 percent saying they are washing their hands more. Close to 75 percent of respondents say they are spending more time at home.

More on the 2020 Great Lakes poll and the full survey can be found on the Baldwin Wallace University Website. 

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