54% of Americans Against COVID Lockdowns in Their State Despite Surge of Infections

Many Americans want their states to stay open and avoid another lockdown despite the nationwide surge in coronavirus infections, according to a new Harvard CAPS/Harris poll released to The Hill on Monday.

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Fifty-four percent of respondents said they wanted their states to stay open, while 46 percent said they believed states should reinstate lockdowns as virus cases continue to soar across the country.

Over 141,000 new virus cases and 843 deaths were reported in the U.S. on November 22, according to The New York Times. Over the past week, there have been 171,376 new daily cases, on average, an increase of 54 percent from the previous two weeks.

As of Monday afternoon, more than 12.3 million people in the country have been infected with the coronavirus and over 256,700 people have died since the start of the pandemic, according to the Times.

A person walks next to a sign asking people to wear a face mask in New York City on November 22. Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images

In an effort to slow the virus’s spread, some states, such as Washington, California and Michigan, have reinstated restrictions. Other states, as well as cities, have issued mask mandates.

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After the election, President-elect Joe Biden called for all Americans to wear masks, among other protective measures.

“I renew my call for every American, regardless of where they live or who they voted for, to step up and do their part on social distancing, hand washing, and mask wearing to protect themselves and to protect others,” said Biden in a November 13 statement. “I understand it’s not easy.”

Seventy-seven percent of those surveyed said they supported a nationwide mask mandate, while 23 percent said they do not, according to the new poll.

“The voters are all for mask mandates but not [a] return to full lockdowns that could overly harm the economy,” Mark Penn, Harvard CAPS/Harris polling director, told The Hill. “It’s a cautious and fearful public, but governors should not see unlimited measures as having public support and should look to put careful logic and reasoning behind what they do to protect the public.”

The Harvard CAPS/Harris poll surveyed 2,205 registered voters between November 17 and 19. The poll was a collaborative effort between the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard University and the Harris Poll.

Full results from the survey will be posted online later this week, according to The Hill.

The co-directors of Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll, Stephen Ansolabehere, Mark Penn and Dritan Nesho, didn’t respond to Newsweek’s request for comment in time for publication.

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