by Donna Martinez
Former Senior Writer and Editor, John Locke Foundation
RALEIGH – A Civitas Flash Poll, conducted over the weekend, found widespread support for Senate Bill 37, In-Person Learning Choice for Families.
Likely North Carolina voters were asked whether they supported or opposed S.B. 37:
|Neither Support nor Oppose||7.9%|
Support for the bill runs the political spectrum, with 80% of Republicans, 56% of Unaffiliateds, and 43% of Democrats affirming their backing of the bill. Alternatively, only 8% of Republicans, 30% of Unaffiliateds, and 43% of Democrats oppose the bill.
In an 11th hour move at 4:47 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26, Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed the bill. The General Assembly has vowed to override the governor’s veto, indicating that a number of Democratic legislators will break ranks with Cooper and vote in favor of at least partial in-person learning for children.
This veto override would follow release of statewide test results that indicate a marked decline in student proficiency since school shutdowns began last year. The results showed that three-fourths of third-graders are not proficient in reading and that the majority of high school students failed Math I, Math 3, and biology exams. Third-grade students were also significantly behind in reading proficiency, with 58% of those tested scoring a Level I, which is the lowest grade possible.
Of likely voters surveyed in the Civitas Flash Poll, an overwhelming majority (77%) believe schools should be either partially or fully re-opened for in-person instruction. Only 18% believe schools should be closed, solely offering virtual instruction.
Those surveyed were also informed of Cooper’s veto of S.B. 37. Forty-nine percent oppose his veto, while 41% support it.
When asked whether the General Assembly should override Cooper’s veto, 48.8% stated that the legislature should override the veto, while only 40% indicated the legislature should not override.
Methodology: This probabilistic survey was conducted February 27 – 28, 2021, with 600 likely voters. It has a margin of error of ±4.0%. Known registered voters were interviewed via IVR and SMS invitation. This survey was weighted to likely voter universe.
Full results here.