An NPR/PBS/Marist poll released Thursday shows a potentially big problem in getting the country back to normal, with large members of these groups saying they will refuse any vaccine (ranked from highest to lowest percentage).
Republican men: 49%.
Trump supporters: 47%.
White men without a college degree: 40%.
White evangelicals: 38%.
Rural Americans: 36%.
Generation Z and Millennials: 36%.
Independent men: 36%.
The amount of Biden supporters who said they won’t get vaccinated was only 10%, among the lowest listings in the poll.
Nearly 35 million. That’s how many Trump voters wouldn’t get the vaccine if the polling turns out to be correct, representing almost 17% of the adult population.
Polling has shown more Americans warming up to the idea of getting vaccinated, and Thursday’s poll gelled well with other surveys, finding 67% of American adults had either been vaccinated or plan to get a vaccine. But it suggests there is still a big problem with getting Trump supporters on board with vaccine plans, even though the U.S. has purchased enough shots for essentially the entire population to be vaccinated by this summer. Many Trump supporters have been skeptical of coronavirus health guidelines from the get go, though, especially when it came to restrictions on businesses and mask mandates. As of Thursday, every state that did not have a mask mandate in place also had a Republican governor.
Former President Donald Trump. His self-dubbed “Office of the Former President” released a statement Wednesday calling the vaccine “beautiful” and telling Americans they should credit him for its existence. “I hope everyone remembers when they’re getting the COVID-19 (often referred to as the China Virus) Vaccine, that if I wasn’t President, you wouldn’t be getting that beautiful ‘shot’ for 5 years, at best, and probably wouldn’t be getting it at all. I hope everyone remembers!” Trump said in a statement. Trump and former First Lady Melania Trump both reportedly received the Covid vaccine at the White House in January.
The poll also showed a continued decline in what was widely reported vaccine hesitancy among the Black community as Covid vaccines were being developed and rolled out. Only 25% of Black Americans said they were not planning to be vaccinated—a lower number than white Americans (28%). The polling did show a much higher rate of vaccine hesitancy among Latino Americans, with 37% saying they did not plan to be vaccinated—much higher than most other demographic groups included in the poll.
What To Watch For
Around 70% to 85% of the population will likely need protection for herd immunity to be reached, Dr. Anthony Fauci has said. Based on Thursday’s poll, between Trump supporters and significant chunks of other demographic groups, those numbers may prove difficult to reach.