Most voters want state lawmakers to keep politics out of business decisions: poll

Most voters want state lawmakers to keep politics out of business decisions and instead focus on factors like cost and reliability, according to a new poll.

The new poll, commissioned by the National Taxpayers Union (NTU) and provided exclusively to The Hill, found that majorities of voters want state lawmakers to make decisions to do business with a company based on its reliability, cost, quality and reputation rather than its stances on political issues.

Sixty-three percent of voters said it was somewhat or not important for the state government to consider what decisions a company makes on controversial political issues when it comes to potential contracts with the company. Another 37 percent said it was “very important” to consider the decisions the company made on political issues.

Nearly two-thirds of voters said it was “not OK” for state lawmakers to refuse to approve business with a company because it supports progressive policies on issues, including climate change and diversity, according to the poll.

An overwhelming majority, 92 percent, also said that state lawmakers should not use taxpayer money to pursue personal agendas. Three-quarters of voters said that state government should not punish companies for their business decisions, the poll found.

“These poll results demonstrate that voters across the ideological spectrum want their government officials to make decisions based on business factors, not politics,” said National Taxpayers Union President Pete Sepp.

“It’s clear that voters don’t want their tax dollars being used to push political agendas or punish companies for their private business decisions. Rather, voters want state government officials to secure the best goods and services at the lowest possible cost to taxpayers,” he added.

Nearly 70 percent of voters said they would oppose legislation prohibiting companies with environmental, social and governance (ESG) policies from doing business with the state. Seventy percent said that it would cost them more money out of their own pockets if state governments prohibited companies with ESG policies from doing business with their government.

Nineteen states last year pushed back on President Biden’s support for ESG, saying that it was a “direct threat to the American economy.”

The poll was conducted by Public Opinion Strategies between April 30 and May 2 among 1,000 registered voters. It has a credibility interval of plus or minus 3.53 percentage points in 95 out of 100 cases.

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