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Poll: Arizonans think 'reopening' is too soon; Most Republicans not concerned

A poll of Arizona voters shows most think the state is easing coronavirus restrictions too fast, with just 32 percent saying reopening is too slow. Republicans mostly say they're not concerned about the disease spreading, while 2/3 of independents and more than 80 percent of Democrats say they're still worried.

The poll, conducted last week by OH Predictive Insights, found that likely voters in the state are less wary about COVID-19 than last month, but 61 percent are still "extremely" or "moderately" concerned about the spread of the virus in Arizona. That's a drop of nine percent from April's poll.

52 percent of respondents think the state is opening too soon. Just 32 percent said reopening is going too slowly.

"While the government has given the green light to reopen businesses, a majority of Arizona voters are idling at a flashing red light," said Mike Noble of the Republican-associated polling firm.

From Noble's assessment of the poll, which surveyed 600 likely voters from May 9-11, with a margin of error of 4 percent:

More than half (52%) of likely Arizona voters, when asked about the stay-at-home order, say they are more worried about easing restrictions too soon which would potentially increase infections and cause more lives to be lost. On the other hand, only about one in three (32%) of respondents said they were more concerned about taking too long to lift the restrictions which may lead to an even bigger economic downturn than has already taken place.

Opinions on the matter differed depending on where in Arizona they live. Voters in populous Maricopa and Pima Counties were much more concerned about opening too soon, whereas voters who lived in the rest of the state were evenly split between being worried about relaxing restrictions too soon and worried about taking too long.

While voters are concerned that the state may reopen too quickly after being shut down, as a whole, they are less concerned about COVID-19 than they were in last month. Currently, the share of voters who said they were “Extremely” or “Moderately” concerned about the spread of the coronavirus in Arizona is 61 percent – 9 points lower than in April when it was 70 percent.

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This decrease in levels of concern is largely driven by Republicans and Independents and not Democrats. In April, 55 percent of Republicans said they were either “Extremely” or “Moderately” concerned about the spread of COVID-19 in Arizona. One month later, that share has fallen to 42 percent. In April, almost 4 in 5 (79 percent) of Independents said they were “Extremely” or “Moderately” concerned about the outbreak in Arizona, whereas now that only 66 percent say the same.

The contrast between voters’ concern regarding the coronavirus is even sharper depending on who the voter supported in the 2016 presidential election. Nearly 9 in 10 Hillary Clinton voters are “Extremely” or “Moderately” concerned about the spread of the coronavirus in Arizona, but only 38 percent of those who voted for President Trump.

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