A new Hill-Harris X poll showed that 74% of registered voters are afraid of losing important freedoms during the coronavirus outbreak.
42% in the poll said they were very concerned about losing freedoms, while another 32% said they were somewhat concerned. The numbers were consistent across genders, but more in the 35 to 49 age range were very concerned (55%) compared those younger and older.
The poll was conducted April 6 and 7, during a time when many state governments were imposing strict lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, among other restrictions. Since then, many states have had protests by those who want businesses to be reopened and restrictions lifted.
Other fears expressed in the poll include fear of having to go to the hospital (73%), fear of losing a job (48%), and fear of having to move because of coronavirus (35%).
What Americans want
On their face, these numbers seem to conflict with other polls that show an even larger number of Americans fear ending shutdowns too soon. A recent Politico/Morning Consult poll, for instance, showed that 81% of Americans favored continuing shutdowns indefinitely if ending them would lead to increasing spread of the virus.
But the polls may be showing that Americans have many fears about coronavirus–including the biggest fear expressed in the Hill/Harris X poll–being exposed to coronavirus. 83% of respondents said they were very or somewhat afraid of exposure.
It seems that Americans want to have their cake and eat it, too. They want protection from the virus, which they think these shutdowns are giving them, but at the same time, they want to keep their freedoms.
Most people right now seem to be choosing shutdowns, which are harming small business owners in ways some may never be able to recover from, over freedoms.
Can Democrats let go?
The question is, will Democrat politicians currently grabbing powers be able to let them go as new coronavirus case and hospitalization numbers drop?
Several Democrat governors are talking about a new normal and trying to link lifting restrictions to enacting Progressive priorities like increases in food stamps, expanding family leave, and benefits for illegal immigrants.
At some point, the fear of the virus will dissipate, and the focus will shift to freedoms that have been lost. Freedom-loving Americans should hope that happens before November, or voters could decide to elect a Democrat who might continue to violate their freedoms for the forseeable future, and in ways that will be difficult to change once they begin.
This virus could bring about the end of America as we know it. It’s sad to see Democrats fear-mongering as a way to power-grab.
Is that really what Americans want in their leadership?