March 22, 2018 - Most U.S. Voters Back Life Over Death Penalty, Quinnipiac University National Poll Finds; Voters Back Anti-Gun March 2-1, But Say It Won't Work Quinnipiac University Polling Logo
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In a simple question, American voters support the death penalty 58 - 33 percent for persons convicted of murder, according to a Quinnipiac University National Poll released today.

But when offered a choice between the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole, American voters choose the life option 51 - 37 percent, the first time a majority of voters backed the life without parole option since the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University Poll first asked this question in 2004.

There are deep party and gender divisions as Republicans back the death penalty 59 - 29 percent. Backing the life option are Democrats 73 - 19 percent and independent voters 49 - 37 percent. Women back the life option 56 - 33 percent. Men are divided as 45 percent back the life option and 42 percent support the death penalty.

American voters are more united as they oppose 71 - 21 percent, including 57 - 35 percent opposition among Republicans, imposing the death penalty for persons convicted of selling drugs that cause a lethal overdose.

Voters say 75 - 20 percent that this use of the death penalty would not help stop the opioid crisis.

But voters say 64 - 31 percent that the death penalty should not be abolished nationwide. Democrats are divided as 47 percent say abolish the death penalty and 46 percent say don't abolish it. Every other listed party, gender, education, age and racial group is opposed to abolishing the death penalty.

"It's a mixed message on a question that has moral and religious implications. Voters are perhaps saying, 'Keep the death penalty, but just don't use it," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"Despite what President Donald Trump says, neither Democrats nor Republicans have the stomach for executing drug dealers," Malloy added.

Climate Change

A total of 69 percent of American voters are "very concerned" or "somewhat concerned" about climate change, while 31 percent are "not so concerned" or "not concerned at all."

A total of 62 percent are "very concerned" or "somewhat concerned" that they or a family member will be personally affected by climate change, while 37 percent are "not so concerned" or "not concerned at all."

Only 22 percent of voters say the U.S. is doing enough to address climate change, while 10 percent say the U.S. is doing too much and 63 percent say more needs to be done.

More needs to be done, say 27 percent of Republicans, 92 percent of Democrats and 64 percent of independent voters.

Climate change contributed to the recent surge of storms battering New England, 48 percent of American voters say.

Gun Violence

American voters approve 63 - 31 percent a nationwide march Saturday in support of stricter gun laws. Republicans disapprove of the march 61 - 31 percent. Voters say 62 - 31 percent, however, that the march will not be effective in getting new gun laws passed.

President Donald Trump must do more to reduce gun violence, 61 percent of voters say, as 32 percent say he is doing enough.

Congress must do more to reduce gun violence, 68 percent of voters say, as 25 percent say Congress is doing enough.

From March 16 - 20, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,291 voters nationwide with a margin of error of +/- 3.3 percentage points, including the design effect. Live interviewers call landlines and cell phones.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts nationwide public opinion surveys, and statewide polls in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Iowa and Colorado as a public service and for research.

Visit poll.qu.edu or www.facebook.com/quinnipiacpoll

Call (203) 582-5201, or follow us on Twitter @QuinnipiacPoll.




27. Do you support or oppose the death penalty for persons convicted of murder?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Support              58%    82%    38%    57%    66%    50%    53%    71%
Oppose               33     13     52     33     27     39     39     24
DK/NA                 9      5     10     10      7     11      8      5
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Support              57%    60%    57%    56%    68%    56%    62%    42%    50%
Oppose               36     30     35     33     28     35     32     41     38
DK/NA                 7     10      8     11      4      9      6     17     13
 
 
28. Which punishment do you prefer for people convicted of murder: the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Death penalty        37%    59%    19%    37%    42%    33%    32%    47%
Life/No parole       51     29     73     49     45     56     55     40
DK/NA                12     12      9     14     13     11     13     12
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Death penalty        28%    40%    42%    35%    46%    34%    40%    23%    34%
Life/No parole       58     47     48     53     41     54     48     70     57
DK/NA                13     13      9     12     13     12     12      7     10
 
TREND: Which punishment do you prefer for people convicted of murder: the death penalty or life in prison with no chance of parole?
                     Death   Life
                     Pen     NoPar   DK/NA
 
Mar 22, 2018         37      51      12
Jun 01, 2015         43      48       9
May 02, 2013         48      43       9
Jul 17, 2008         47      44       9
Dec 14, 2004         42      46      12
 
 
29. Do you support or oppose the death penalty for persons convicted of selling drugs that contributed to a fatal overdose?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Support              21%    35%     7%    22%    24%    18%    16%    29%
Oppose               71     57     87     69     70     73     77     62
DK/NA                 8      8      6      9      6      9      7      9
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Support              18%    19%    20%    25%    26%    19%    22%     4%    29%
Oppose               82     74     72     63     68     71     69     90     69
DK/NA                 1      8      8     12      6     10      8      6      3
 
 
30. Do you think allowing the death penalty to be brought against people convicted of selling drugs that contributed to a fatal overdose will help stop the opioid crisis, or don't you think that will help stop the opioid crisis?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Yes/Help stop crisis 20%    33%     7%    19%    24%    15%    16%    24%
No                   75     57     91     76     72     78     80     68
DK/NA                 5     10      3      5      4      7      4      7
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes/Help stop crisis 21%    21%    17%    18%    23%    17%    20%     3%    31%
No                   76     77     80     74     73     76     74     95     65
DK/NA                 3      2      3      8      4      7      6      2      4
 
 
40. How concerned are you about climate change; very concerned, somewhat concerned, not so concerned, or not concerned at all?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Very concerned       42%    11%    72%    39%    33%    50%    45%    30%
Smwht concerned      27     27     23     30     29     25     29     25
Not so concerned     16     30      4     16     21     11     13     21
Not concerned at all 15     32      1     14     17     13     12     23
DK/NA                 1      -      -      1      1      -      -      1
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Very concerned       42%    45%    40%    42%    30%    45%    38%    57%    54%
Smwht concerned      30     25     30     23     29     26     27     29     24
Not so concerned     18     17     13     15     21     14     17     13     14
Not concerned at all  9     13     16     20     20     15     17      1      7
DK/NA                 1      -      -      1      1      1      1      -      -
 
TREND: How concerned are you about climate change; very concerned, somewhat concerned, not so concerned, or not concerned at all?
                     Very    Smwht   NotSo   Not
                     Concern Concern Concern Concern DK/NA
 
Mar 22, 2018         42      27      16      15       1
Sep 28, 2017         45      27      10      18       -
Aug 16, 2017         45      28      12      14       1
Jun 07, 2017         49      27      10      13       - 
Apr 05, 2017         45      31      11      12       1 
Mar 24, 2017         43      30      15      12       - 
Mar 08, 2017         46      25      14      15       1 
Feb 08, 2017         44      28      12      14       - 
Jan 27, 2017         44      30      14      12       - 
Jan 12, 2017         45      29      14      13       1
See additional trend information at top of page

41. How concerned are you that you or a member of your family will be personally affected by climate change: very concerned, somewhat concerned, not so concerned, or not concerned at all?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Very concerned       35%    11%    59%    34%    26%    44%    35%    29%
Smwht concerned      27     22     31     29     27     27     29     24
Not so concerned     17     25      7     19     20     13     19     18
Not concerned at all 20     42      2     18     26     14     17     29
DK/NA                 1      -      1      1      1      1      -      1
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Very concerned       32%    38%    34%    37%    22%    40%    32%    46%    46%
Smwht concerned      28     25     31     24     27     27     27     35     27
Not so concerned     20     19     13     15     22     15     18     10     11
Not concerned at all 19     18     22     23     28     17     23      7     14
DK/NA                 1      -      -      1      1      -      1      1      2
 
TREND: How concerned are you that you or a member of your family will be personally affected by climate change: very concerned, somewhat concerned, not so concerned, or not concerned at all?
                     Very    Smwht   NotSo   Not
                     Concern Concern Concern Concern DK/NA
 
Mar 22, 2018         35      27      17      20       1
Sep 28, 2017         36      28      13      22       1
Aug 16, 2017         37      29      14      19       1
Apr 05, 2017         37      29      16      17       1
 
 
42. Do you think the United States is doing enough to address climate change, doing too much, or do you think more needs to be done to address climate change?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Doing enough         22%    41%     6%    24%    26%    18%    22%    28%
Doing too much       10     24      2      7     14      6      8     15
More to be done      63     27     92     64     55     70     66     50
DK/NA                 5      8      1      4      4      5      4      7
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Doing enough         22%    17%    25%    23%    28%    22%    25%    11%    17%
Doing too much        7     11     11     11     17      7     12      3      8
More to be done      68     69     61     58     51     65     58     83     72
DK/NA                 3      3      4      7      5      6      5      3      3
 
TREND: Do you think the United States is doing enough to address climate change, doing too much, or do you think more needs to be done to address climate change?
                     Doing   Doing   MoreTo
                     Enough  TooMuch BeDone  DK/NA
 
Mar 22, 2018         22      10      63       5 
Sep 28, 2017         21      12      63       5
Aug 16, 2017         19      13      64       4
Jun 07, 2017         19      12      65       4
Apr 05, 2017         18      18      59       5
Mar 24, 2017         19      17      59       4
Mar 08, 2017         18      19      59       4
Feb 08, 2017         17      18      59       5 
Dec 03, 2015         21      17      57       5
 
 
43. As you may know, New England has recently experienced multiple large snow storms over a matter of weeks. Do you think that climate change contributed to these events, or not?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Yes/Contributed      48%    17%    77%    47%    39%    56%    47%    39%
No                   41     74     12     41     51     32     41     51
DK/NA                11      9     11     12     10     12     12     10
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes/Contributed      53%    49%    49%    46%    33%    52%    43%    78%    60%
No                   37     39     43     42     56     37     46     16     30
DK/NA                11     13      8     11     10     12     11      5     10
 
 
44. Would you like to see the death penalty abolished nationwide, or not?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Yes/Abolished        31%    13%    47%    30%    26%    35%    36%    24%
No                   64     84     46     64     72     57     60     72
DK/NA                 5      3      6      6      3      7      4      4
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes/Abolished        34%    28%    31%    31%    26%    34%    30%    35%    33%
No                   62     68     64     63     73     59     66     56     60
DK/NA                 4      4      5      6      1      6      4      9      7
 
 
45. Do you think Congress is doing enough to reduce gun violence or do you think Congress needs to do more to reduce gun violence?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Doing enough         25%    46%     3%    27%    33%    17%    21%    34%
Do more              68     41     96     64     58     77     72     56
DK/NA                 8     13      1      9      9      7      7      9
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Doing enough         28%    24%    25%    20%    36%    19%    28%     8%    18%
Do more              67     66     69     72     54     73     64     90     76
DK/NA                 5     10      6      8      9      7      8      2      7
 
                                                 HAVE KIDS <18 YRS
                     Gun    DENSITY............         InPublic
                     HsHld  City   Suburb Rural  Yes    School
 
Doing enough         37%    19%    19%    38%    29%    26%
Do more              53     75     75     50     63     66
DK/NA                10      5      6     12      7      8
 
TREND: Do you think Congress is doing enough to reduce gun violence or do you think Congress needs to do more to reduce gun violence?
                     Doing   Do
                     Enough  More    DK/NA
 
Mar 22, 2018         25      68       8
Feb 20, 2018         17      75       8
Dec 20, 2017         25      67       8
Nov 15, 2017         23      69       9
Oct 12, 2017         24      68       8
 
 
46. Do you think President Trump is doing enough to reduce gun violence or do you think President Trump needs to do more to reduce gun violence?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Doing enough         32%    64%     4%    32%    39%    25%    32%    39%
Do more              61     26     92     60     53     68     63     51
DK/NA                 7     10      4      7      7      7      6     10
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Doing enough         31%    29%    35%    29%    43%    29%    36%    12%    26%
Do more              65     61     60     61     49     64     57     85     70
DK/NA                 4     10      6      9      8      8      8      3      4
 
                                                 HAVE KIDS <18 YRS
                     Gun    DENSITY............         InPublic
                     HsHld  City   Suburb Rural  Yes    School
 
Doing enough         45%    25%    26%    47%    37%    34%
Do more              46     70     68     42     56     59
DK/NA                 9      5      6     10      7      7
 
 
47. In general, do you think that President Trump is afraid of the NRA, or not?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Yes/Afraid           37%     9%    66%    36%    32%    43%    42%    26%
No                   57     89     26     59     65     50     54     71
DK/NA                 5      2      8      4      3      7      4      3
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes/Afraid           37%    34%    40%    39%    28%    39%    34%    56%    44%
No                   59     63     55     54     69     56     62     32     50
DK/NA                 5      4      5      6      2      4      3     12      6
 
                                                 HAVE KIDS <18 YRS
                     Gun    DENSITY............         InPublic
                     HsHld  City   Suburb Rural  Yes    School
 
Yes/Afraid           27%    43%    42%    24%    32%    34%
No                   71     49     54     73     64     62
DK/NA                 2      8      3      4      4      4
 
TREND: In general, do you think that President Trump is afraid of the NRA, or not?
                     Yes     No      DK/NA
 
Mar 22, 2018         37      57       5
Mar 06, 2018         31      65       5
 
 
48. As you may know, there is a march in support of stricter gun laws planned for the end of March. Do you approve or disapprove of this protest?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Approve              63%    31%    94%    63%    56%    70%    66%    53%
Disapprove           31     61      5     29     39     23     27     40
DK/NA                 6      9      1      8      5      7      6      7
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Approve              65%    62%    67%    63%    52%    67%    60%    88%    69%
Disapprove           29     30     29     32     43     26     34      7     28
DK/NA                 7      8      4      4      5      8      7      6      4
 
                                                 HAVE KIDS <18 YRS
                     Gun    DENSITY............         InPublic
                     HsHld  City   Suburb Rural  Yes    School
 
Approve              49%    71%    70%    46%    56%    60%
Disapprove           45     25     23     46     36     32
DK/NA                 6      4      6      9      8      8
 
 
49. Do you think that the march in support of stricter gun laws will be effective in getting new gun laws passed, or not?
                                                               WHITE......
                                                               COLLEGE DEG
                     Tot    Rep    Dem    Ind    Men    Wom    Yes    No
 
Yes/Effective        31%    17%    48%    27%    26%    35%    32%    25%
No                   62     77     43     66     69     55     61     66
DK/NA                 7      6      9      7      5     10      7      9
 
                     AGE IN YRS..............    WHITE.....
                     18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Men    Wom    Wht    Blk    Hsp
 
Yes/Effective        28%    22%    35%    33%    22%    34%    28%    43%    41%
No                   67     69     59     58     72     56     64     48     54
DK/NA                 5      8      6      9      6     10      8      9      5
 
                                                 HAVE KIDS <18 YRS
                     Gun    DENSITY............         InPublic
                     HsHld  City   Suburb Rural  Yes    School
 
Yes/Effective        21%    35%    33%    22%    24%    26%
No                   72     58     61     68     69     68
DK/NA                 6      7      6     10      6      5