A critical mass of Utahns says the so-called “Zion Curtain,” which blocks the view of the preparation of alcoholic beverages in restaurants, should go the way of the Dodo.
The latest UtahPolicy.com survey by Dan Jones & Associates finds 70% of Utahns oppose the regulation requiring the law. That number includes nearly half (46%) who “strongly” oppose the law.
In theory, the wall is designed to curb alcohol use among the young because they won’t feel curious about drinking it because they can’t see drinks being mixed. An “out of sight, out of mind” mentality.
On Tuesday morning, a Senate committee nixed Sen. Jim Dabakis’ bill to remove the 7-foot high barrier, opting instead to hold the issue for interim study.
Dabakis, D-Salt Lake City, says he’s not surprised that the poll numbers support his position.
“It is stupid, and it is clear to the people of the state of Utah, if not the Legislature, that this (wall) does nothing to discourage the use of alcohol,” said Dabakis. “As a legislature, you can only go so long in direct absolute opposition to what the people of the state want.”
Opposition to the Zion Curtain cuts across every ideological and political line.
– Republicans oppose the wall 55-37%
– Democrats oppose 93-4%
– Political independents are opposed 82-12%
Not surprisingly, as you move further to the left politically, the stronger opposition to the Zion Curtain becomes.
– A slim majority of those who describe themselves as “very conservative” are opposed 54-37%.
– The “somewhat conservative.” oppose the wall 59-35%.
– Political moderates say they’re opposed 83-10%.
Liberals really don’t like the Zion Curtain, with support for the barrier hovering in the low single-digits.
Even a majority of Mormons, who don’t drink alcohol, are opposed.
“Very active” Mormons oppose the law by 20-points (56-36%).
“Somewhat active” LDS Church members are opposed by nearly 30-points (66-37%).
Mormons who are “not active” say they are opposed by an 85-12% margin.
These latest poll numbers are consistent with previous UtahPolicy.com surveys.
A November 2014 survey found nearly 62% of Utahns favored doing away with the wall in restaurants. That survey found just 48% of Republicans supported getting rid of the wall while 88% of Democrats and 73% of independents felt that way.
A February 2015 survey found more than 2/3 of Utahns (67%) wanted to take down the curtain.
Dabakis says he plans to bring the issue back to the legislature again and again until it passes.
“The Legislature needs to be brought into the 21st century kicking and screaming or whatever and they’ve got to address this because it’s dumb-headed.”
The latest survey was conducted February 10-15, 2015 among 625 adult Utahns. Respondents were contacted through live telephone calls (both landline and cell phone) and online means. It has a margin of error +/-3.92%