Rasmussen poll: Wisconsin voters support collective bargaining rights

By Sahil Kapur
Thursday, March 3, 2011 12:21 EDT
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WASHINGTON – A new Rasmussen poll found Thursday that a clear majority of Wisconsin voters oppose Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) efforts to strip collective bargaining rights for public employee unions.

Fifty-two percent said they oppose weakening collective bargaining rights, while 39 percent were in favor of it.

Recent surveys by the New York Times/CBS, Wall Street Journal/NBC, Pew, and Gallup all found majority or plurality support across the country for maintaining the collective bargaining rights of unionized state workers.

A national poll last month by Rasmussen, whose surveys tend to favor of conservative ideas and lawmakers, was widely cited by Walker’s supporters after it found support for curtailing those rights. Its accuracy was disputed by New York Times polling expert Nate Silver.

The Rasmussen figures put Walker and his allies in a tough position over what has grown into a high-profile standoff in his state, as Wisconsin Democrats weeks ago fled the state to protest the measure.

The Rasmussen survey also found that 44 percent of Wisconsin voters support a 10 percent pay cut for all state employees, while 38 percent oppose such an idea. Wisconsin public employee unions have offered major concessions in benefits and pensions.

The poll was conducted with 800 likely voters in Wisconsin on March 2, 2011 with a margin of error of +/- 4 percentage points.

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