A newly released Monmouth University Poll reveals that 70% of Americans agree it’s time to accept that COVID is here to stay and move on with our lives. I couldn’t agree more.
Interestingly, of the 70% who agree it’s time to move on, 78% “report having gotten COVID and 65% of those who say they have not been infected.” It seems even those who have yet to get the virus are saying enough is enough. Surprisingly, exposure to the virus doesn’t appear to be the main factor in determining whether it’s “time to move on.” Monmouth claims the main factor “is due to partisanship—ranging from 89% of Republicans and 71% of independents to 47% of Democrats.” Seriously? That seems a little partisan and short-sighted since Americans of all parties prefer to work, attend school, and live life over being locked down.
“Americans’ worries about COVID haven’t gone away,” said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute. “It seems more to be a realization that we are not going to get this virus under control in a way that we thought was possible just last year.” Of course, they haven’t gone away because Biden and his Democratic minions push COVID fear 24/7.
The poll finds a majority of Americans continue to support some preventative measures, such as face masks and social distancing, though they don’t support others, such as workplace vaccine mandates. “We still see public support for maintaining some degree of public safety around COVID,” said Murray. “However, there appears to be an acknowledgment that federal measures have not been effective, or at least have failed to be widely accepted.” What they don’t mention here is that most Americans have always supported these measures. What we haven’t supported is the government forcing us to do so.
Americans’ fading faith in the ability of President Biden and the federal government to successfully manage the pandemic is evident in the poll. “A key factor in the public’s inclination to accept having to live with COVID is the intransigence of a sizable segment of the population on vaccination. It seems unlikely that herd immunity could ever be achieved through preventative measures,” said Murray. Really? Talk about partisan. How on earth did the director extrapolate that from the data? Last I heard, healthy people getting and recovering from COVID is the fastest way to herd immunity according to the science, but okay then.
For the first time, more Americans say Biden has done a bad job (53%) handling the pandemic while only 43% say he’s done a good job. A month ago, Biden’s rating was evenly split (46% good job and 46% bad job). At the same time, ratings for state governors’ handling of COVID have improved slightly (54% good job and 41% bad job, compared with 50% good and 41% bad in December). It seems unlikely Monmouth polled anyone still living in Gavin Newsom’s draconian California though.
Forty percent of Americans report they’ve either had COVID or think they’ve had it, including 27% who said they confirmed it with a test. Thirty-six percent of vaccinated people report also having had COVID while 61% of those unvaccinated say they’ve had the virus. Half the public is either very (23%) or somewhat (27%) concerned about getting a new COVID variant. The number of Americans who are very concerned (38%) about a family member becoming seriously ill from COVID has gone up 8% since December, but it’s lower than 45% from September when the delta variant was spreading.
Overall it’s certainly encouraging that more Americans are coming to realize COVID is here to stay. We can and we must get on with life. However, this poll also makes me curious as to where the respondents get their news and how the incessant drumbeat of the negative fear porn of the mainstream media has impacted their perception of the pandemic. Perhaps next time Monmouth will think to ask that question.