The 2020 Legislature’s general session, which ended in early March, was not a success, most Utahns say in a recent UtahPolicy.com/KUTV 2News poll.
And the GOP-dominated 45-day Legislature failed to address issues of real concern to the state, and failed to address issues adequately for individual residents, Y2 Analytics finds in the new survey.
Now, the survey was conducted towards the end of March, and so some feelings of frustration may be coming through as the state’s coronavirus lockdown of residents began.
Still, the results are likely disappointing to GOP lawmakers, who ended the session with some real success stories: Like record-setting spending in public education, an agreement to amend the state Constitution to ameliorate a budget balancing problem, and an agreement with backers of the new independent redistricting commission to set up a workable 2021 outside panel to study and recommend the critical redistricting of U.S. House seats and legislative districts.
But, unfortunately for the Republican majorities in the House and Senate, citizens by and large didn’t agree that lawmakers took on critical issues.
Some of the numbers:
53 percent of Utah votes said the 2020 Legislature did not have a successful session.
47 percent said the 45-days was a success for the state.
As we see in a previously-published story on the overall job performance of the Legislature, the citizenry is greatly split along partisan lines:
65 percent of “strong” Republicans said the general session was a success. But a third, 35 percent, of strong Republicans said it was not a success -- that’s got to hurt GOP lawmakers to see a third of their partisan base unhappy with their recent work.
Political independents are split, 59 percent said not a success, 41 percent said it was.
And not surprising, 79 percent of Utah Democrats believe the 2020 Legislature fell well short of what could have been done.
Of course, no single session addresses all of the state’s problems or concerns. Each session is just a work in progress.
But 64 percent of Utah voters said the 2020 Legislature did not address the state’s major problems -- not a good number for lawmakers.
Only 36 percent believed they did.
And even most “strong” Republicans said lawmakers of their own party fell short -- 57 percent said major problems were not addressed, only 46 percent said they were.
Political independents are more critical -- three-fourths said lawmakers didn’t address major problems; Democrats even more so, 87 percent saying the Legislature didn’t take on tough issues.
Finally, two-thirds of Utahns said lawmakers didn’t address the issues most important to them individually.
The only demographic groups who said lawmakers did take on their own concerns were “strong” Republicans and “strong” conservatives.
By healthy majorities all the other groups -- political independents, “strong” Democrats, moderates and “strong” liberals all said the 2020 Legislature didn’t address the issues they cared most about.
Utah Policy.com is partnering with KUTV 2News and Y2 Analytics and will be providing polling results on a regular basis throughout the election season.