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VCET Poll Finds Support for Public Trans. Spending, Opposition to Uranium, TRAP Scepticism
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SEPTEMBER 14, 2011
CONTACT: ANNA SCHOLL (434) 218-2113
Virginia Civic Engagement Table poll on issues of community interest finds strong support for increased public transportation spending, opposition to uranium mining, disbelief that TRAP regulations are in the interest of women's safety.
Richmond, VA - A poll conducted by the Virginia Civic Engagement Table on a range of issues of community interest found widely held opinions on choice, public transportation and uranium mining. The survey found Virginians are most concerned with the economy, education, and transportation issues.
On transportation issues, the survey found respondents support developing mass transit versus building new roads and highways by a 41%-33% margin. Virginians also strongly agreed with statements that investment in public transportation creates jobs and boosts economic growth as well as decreasing our reliance on oil and gas.
"Transportation choices like METRO and Amtrak are undeniably popular with Virginians for good reasons," said Virginia Sierra Club Associate Director J.R. Tolbert. "Investments in these solutions create more jobs, clean the air and ease congestion much more than any new road ever will. It's not too late for Governor McDonnell to get on board with public transportation. By meeting Virginia's obligation to fully funding Phase II of the Dulles METRO extension and urging Congress to abandon its plan to eliminate Amtrak's state sponsored services, McDonnell can give Virginians what they want, more choices and less traffic."
Only one-third of respondents think new emergency regulations requiring facilities that perform first-trimester abortions to be regulated as hospitals are being advanced in the interest of women's health. A strong plurality, 45%, agreed that supporters of the regulations are attempting to outlaw legal abortion services. The survey also found 72% of Virginians believe abortion should be legal.
Additionally, two-thirds of respondents oppose cuts in state funding for women's health services and 72% agree students should have access to comprehensive sex education. "What these results remind us is that Virginian's believe in protecting women's access to basic healthcare," said Joseph Richards with NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia. "Virginians recognize that singling out women's healthcare centers for new regulations is nothing more than a politically motivated, backdoor attempt to end abortion access in the Commonwealth."
On uranium mining, 58% of respondents oppose lifting Virginia's ban due to health and water contamination concerns, versus 20% who believe the potential for job creation outweighs the risk.
Lisa Guthrie, Executive Director of the Virginia League of Conservation Voters, stated, "Despite the media efforts of the uranium mining industry, these overwhelming responses show that citizens - even hundreds of miles from the proposed mining site - strongly object to potential threats to human health from uranium mining."
The survey was conducted August 15 - 21 by Third Eye Strategies on behalf of the Virginia Civic Engagement Table. The sample of 802 likely voters in bellwether regions of the state and yielded a margin of error of +/- 3.5%. Additional information and survey results can be found online at www.progressva.org/educationfund.
The Virginia Civic Engagement Table helps grassroots organizations win shared policy and civic engagement victories by creating a common strategic framework and increasing the capacity of member organizations to create sustainable progressive change.