Are Americans clamoring for additional stimulus payments to ease the still widespread effects of the pandemic? Seeing more than two million petitioners on Change.org signing their name beneath a request for financial assistance is a powerful movement. But in a nation of more than 300 million individuals, is that how Americans really feel?
To better understand sentiment around additional federal aid, CivicScience surveyed Americans 18 and older about a potential fourth stimulus check (which the government has not indicated will be included in future stimulus packages). Out of 2,500 respondents, one-third believe the federal government should issue a fourth payment to qualifying Americans, while 53% believe it should not.
This wasn’t quite the same story a month ago. In the first two weeks of April, 43% of respondents were saying no to a fourth stimulus, but the ten-percentage-point difference (43% then compared to 53% currently) was equally split between those in favor and those who weren’t sure. For this reason, the data in this report was not rebased to exclude those who were on the fence.
Women’s support of a fourth round of stimulus checks does not deviate from ongoing CivicScience tracking which has consistently shown women more concerned about the pandemic and tangential issues.
Support starkly under-indexes at the $75K or higher income brackets where qualifying Americans start to taper off. The more income a person makes the more likely they are to say the government should hold on further direct payments to individuals.
Perhaps related to the child tax credits already in motion for parents, people without children are more in favor of additional stimulus payments (37% compared to 33% of parents).
People who have received the vaccine, or plan to, look fairly similar in their opinions on a fourth stimulus payment. People who report being unsure if they will get the COVID-19 vaccine — while a small percentage of the population — are significantly more likely to support more coronavirus relief.
Ultimately, more Americans oppose rather than support getting another check from the government. Zooming in on segments of the population shows who is driving support for more aid, but it doesn’t shed light on the best way for a nation to recover from an unprecedented public health crisis. As decision makers, issue advocates, and industry leaders wade through complicated waters, sentiment tracking will be critical to designing recovery solutions that serve all Americans.