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New poll shows how Michiganders feel about coronavirus measures, economy, Whitmer approval

A closed sign is shown with an empty parking lot in Detroit, Thursday, April 2, 2020.
A closed sign is shown with an empty parking lot in Detroit, Thursday, April 2, 2020. (Paul Sancya/AP)

DETROIT – A new poll released by the Detroit Regional Chamber shows how Michiganders feel about the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

The poll, released on Monday, looked at a variety of topics, including how safe residents feel returning to work, expectations on returning to normal life, and approval of leaders like Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and President Donald Trump.

Here are some of the findings:

  • 9% of respondents believe they have contracted COVID-19.
  • 29% of respondents are furloughed, laid off, or unable to work.
  • 3% of respondents that were working prior to the outbreak have been forced to file for unemployment.
  • 6% of respondents that were working prior to the outbreak, are now furloughed, laid off, or unable to work.
  • 69% of furloughed or laid-off workers face catastrophic to major financial impact.
  • 28% of respondents are worried about putting food on the table.
  • The majority of respondents, 50%, believe Michigan is already in a recession.

President Trump COVID-19 Approval at 44%

Respondents disapprove of President Trump’s handling of COVID-19 (Approve 44% to Disapprove 50%)

  • Republicans approve of his handling by a margin of 88% to 9%.
  • Democrats disapprove of his handling by a margin of 6% to 86%.
  • Independent voters disapprove of his handling by a margin of 40% to 52%.
  • Men approve of his handling 49% to 46%.
  • But women disapprove of his handling by a margin of 39% to 54%.

Governor Whitmer COVID-19 Approval at 57%

Respondents approve of Gov. Whitmer’s handling of COVID-19: (Approval: 57% to Disapproval: 37%)

  • Democrats approve of her handling by a margin of 89% to 8%.
  • Republicans disapprove of her handling by a margin of 22% to 70%.
  • But Independent voters approve of her handing by a margin of 56% to 35%.
  • Men approve of her handling 49% to 42%.
  • Women strongly approve of her handling by a margin of 64% to 32%.

Michiganders Split on When State Will Be Back to Normal

Respondents were asked how long it would take for Michigan to return to normal.

  • 18% said Michigan would be back to normal with one month.
  • 39% said between one to six months.
  • 36% said in a year a more.
  • 4% said a few weeks
  • 14% said a month
  • 24% said several months
  • 15% said six months
  • 18% said a year
  • 18% said more than one year
  • 7% are not sure.

View the full data for the poll at: detroitchamber.com/MIcovidpolldata

“This poll puts the level of economic struggle across the state in stark relief. Poll results report 29% of respondents furloughed, laid off, or unable to work. This points to the real possibility for the official unemployment rate for April to exceed our bleakest expectations,” said Sandy K. Baruah, president and CEO of the Chamber. “The dual-threat of navigating our greatest public health crisis coupled with our greatest economic crisis has placed a hereto unknown strain on Michigan families.”

The statewide general population poll was commissioned by the Detroit Regional Chamber and conducted by the Chamber’s polling partner, Glengariff Group Inc., of 600 Michiganders between April 15 through 16, 2020.

“The 600-sample survey provides a margin of error of +/-4.0% with a 95% level of confidence. Data collection for this survey was conducted via automated calling and text messaging. 50% of respondents were contacted via automatic dialing, landline telephone. 50% of respondents were contacted via cell phone text message.”

Related: Coronavirus in Michigan: 5 things to watch for this week


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