Poll Results: Groundbreaking New Polls on Local Democracy, Home Rule, Minimum Wage

New York, NY — A new, bipartisan poll of voters nationwide shows that a majority are unhappy about state lawmakers banning cities from passing local ordinances, including gun control. Another new poll shows Florida voters believe cities should be able to raise local minimum wages, just as the Florida Supreme Court considers taking up Miami Beach’s minimum wage case.

Pollsters and experts held a press call Thursday to release the results of two polls, one by Anzalone Liszt Grove Research and Moore Information, commissioned by the Local Solutions Support Center, and one by Public Policy Polling, commissioned by the National Employment Law Project.

Here are key results from the ALG/Moore poll:

Trust in Government

  • Local government is trusted by a wide 63-32 margin
  • This compares with trust in state legislatures at 48-45, and abysmally low trust in Congress at 28-68

Reasons for Preemption

  • 70% believe preemption happens frequently or sometimes due to corporate special interests and lobbyists convincing state lawmakers to preempt local laws to protect their profits

“Local Knows Best”

  • 58% believe local governments are more connected to the community’s needs, and can pass policies that reflect the community’s values
  • This remains true across party lines — 57% of Democrats, 58% of Republicans, and 60% of Independents agree

Consequences of Preemption

  • 65% believe that state preemption hurts local democracy when lawmakers block local workplace ordinances, like wage theft, paid sick time, and local minimum wages
  • 60% believe that blanket preemption than bans all local economic policies has negative results
  • 58% also believe state lawmakers should not use preemption to overturn local election results, such as ballot initiatives and referenda

Impact of Information

  • When informed, voters agree 68-32 that local communities should determine their own economic policies, a net 40-point shift
  • When informed, voters also agree 68-32 that state lawmakers threatens local democracy through preemption, a net 20-point shift

Here are key results from the PPP poll:

  • Florida voters believe 67-28 that cities should be able to enact a higher local minimum wage than the state’s
  • Support is strong across party lines: Democrats agree 79-18, Independents 68-29, and Republicans 53-37
  • Florida voters also agree 61-30 that the Florida Constitution already gives cities the right to raise their local minimum wage above the state’s
  • This also remains strong across party lines: Democrats agree 68-23, Independents 64-26, and Republicans 51-40

“People know that their local mayors and commissioners know their communities and issues best, they agree that local government best reflects their values, views, and needs, and they simply trust local leadership most,” said Kim Haddow, Executive Director of the Local Solutions Support Center. “These results show that people want their local voices to be heard and counted, and want state lawmakers to respect local democracy.”

“Floridians understand that every community is different, and the minimum wage that works in one city may not work in another,” said Laura Huizar, Staff Attorney with the National Employment Law Project. “This poll shows that Florida voters across party lines believe their cities should be able to adopt a higher local minimum wage, and they also believe that Florida cities already have the right to adopt a higher minimum wage under the state Constitution. That’s why a group of distinguished legal scholars, the Florida League of Cities, the International Municipal Lawyers Association, the League of Women Voters in Florida, LatinoJustice PRLDEF, and the drafter of the 2004 constitutional amendment that established Florida’s minimum wage have all filed a notice of intent to submit amicus briefs with the Florida Supreme Court in support of that local right.”

To receive a copy of the poll memos and slides, or to arrange interviews with the pollsters and experts, contact franco@catecomm.com.

ALG/Moore Methodology: 811 registered voters nationwide were polled online between January 9-11, 2018, following a three-day online focus group from December 12-14, 2017 of likely 2018 voters in eight key states with frequent legislative preemption.

PPP Methodology: 574 Florida voters participated in a telephone poll between January 31-February 1, 2018.

About LSSC: The Local Solutions Support Center (LSSC) was established as a hub to align, support, develop, and implement nonpartisan strategies and tactics designed to educate the public and policymakers about preemption efforts that undermine local democracy, and to affirm and strengthen home rule.

About NELP: For more than 45 years, NELP has sought to ensure that America upholds for all workers her promise of opportunity and economic security through work. NELP fights for policies to create good jobs, expand access to work, and strengthen protections and support for low-wage workers and the unemployed.

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