MSUB releases 30th Annual Montana Poll
Montanans point to government, terrorism and the economy as major problems, support Donald Trump for president and Steve Bullock for governor in poll conducted by MSUB students
Dr. Nisha Bellinger, assistant professor, Social Sciences & Cultural Studies, 657-2933
University Relations, 657-2266
MSU BILLINGS NEWS SERVICES — Between October 3 and 10 students enrolled in the course “Political Science 342: Media, Public Opinion, Polling” spent hours on the phone interviewing 590 adults in Montana about everything from gun rights to the presidential election.
It’s an annual tradition at Montana State University Billings and on Tuesday the results of the 30th Annual Montana Poll were released to the public, media and campaigns keen on what the survey revealed.
Twenty-two students in upper level political science and sociology classes participated in the process, led by Dr. Nisha Bellinger, assistant professor.
Results of the survey indicate Montanans don’t always fit a progressive or conservative mold.
Forty-four percent of respondents indicated they would vote for incumbent Gov. Steve Bullock, a democrat, over republican challenger Greg Gianforte, who received 32 percent support. An additional 20 percent of respondents were undecided and three percent indicated they would vote for Ted Dunlap, running on the libertarian ticket.
However, many more respondents indicated they would be supporting Donald Trump for president than democratic contender Hillary Clinton. The republican nominee pulled 43 percent overall support, compared to Clinton’s 27 percent, with 20 percent indicating they were undecided and another two percent saying they would vote for Green-party candidate Jill Stein.
“Respondents were more progressive on some issues than on others. For instance, our survey suggested more support on issues like climate change and equal pay, so they aren’t completely conservative but not completely progressive either because we also show most respondents not supporting higher education in public institutions being tuition free,” Bellinger said.
Terrorism has dropped in urgency from 2015. Last year’s poll found terrorism to be the number one problem facing the United States, however, just prior to that survey a major terrorist attack took place in Paris, France.
This year’s number one problem was identified as the government, followed by terrorism and the economy.