Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Republicans more likely to say infrastructure has gotten worse; voters want roads, bridges repaired

While Democratic officials are more likely to be heard advocating more spending on infrastructure projects, Republican voters are more likely to say that the state of the nation's infrastructure is declining, according to a poll by the Association of Equipment Managers.

The survey of 2,000 registered voters found that 41 percent of Democrats and 53 percent of Republicans believe that U.S. infrastructure has gotten worse off in the last five years. The overall figure was 46 percent.

The poll found that 80 to 90 percent of respondents believe roads, bridges and energy grids are in some or extreme need of repair. State action was favored, marginally; 76 percent said state government should do more to improve infrastructure; 72 percent said the federal government should do more; and 70 percent said local government should do more.

A 2014 report found that as much as one-third of rural roads in some states are in poor condition and many bridges are deficient. A 2015 Associated Press story said that some states have stopped repairing rural roads, in favor of bigger, costlier urban projects. (AEM graphic)
The poll found that older Americans tended to be more concerned with road conditions, Stephanie Kelly reports for Reuters. "Seventy-three percent of those 65 and older rated U.S. roads poor to fair, compared with 55 percent of 18-34 year-olds. When asked about innovation, millennials placed more importance on vertical farms for producing vegetables in urban areas, self-driving cars and drones, the report said. Older voters felt most strongly about 'smarter infrastructure.'"

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