AP VoteCast: Michigan voters sour on state of nation, say virus is top priority

Election inspectors are reflected in a window at right as they begin processing ballots while a voter outside arrives to drop off a ballot at an official drop-off box on Election Day at City Hall in Warren, Mich., in Macomb County, Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020. (AP Photo/David Goldman) (David Goldman, Copyright 2020 Associated Press)

Voters in Michigan made their pick for president while holding negative views about the country’s direction, according to an expansive AP survey of the American electorate.

The race between President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden concluded Tuesday as the nation remains in the throes of a global public health crisis and mired in the economic downturn it brought on. AP VoteCast found that 38% of Michigan voters said the U.S. is on the right track and 61% of voters said it is headed in the wrong direction.

Here’s a snapshot of who voted and what matters to them, based on preliminary results from AP VoteCast, a nationwide survey of about 127,000 voters and nonvoters -- including 3,453 voters and 893 nonvoters in Michigan -- conducted for The Associated Press by NORC at the University of Chicago.

FACING THE PANDEMIC

The coronavirus pandemic has spread through the U.S. for roughly eight months, killing more than 230,000 Americans. Overall, 17% of voters said the virus in the U.S. is completely or mostly under control, and 29% said it’s somewhat under control. Fifty-four percent of voters think the coronavirus is not at all under control in this country.

ON THE ISSUES

The coronavirus pandemic was top of mind for many voters in Michigan. Forty-four percent said it is the most important issue facing the country today.

Voters also considered the economy a major issue, with 24% saying it ranked at the top.

Ten percent named health care, 6% named racism and 4% named law enforcement.

NATIONAL ECONOMY

Voters were more negative than positive in their assessments of the nation’s economy. Overall, 43% described economic conditions in the U.S. as excellent or good, and 56% called them not so good or poor.

More coverage: Decision 2020