Most voters in Jacksonville don’t want the Republican National Convention coming to their city, according to a new poll, and many are worried the GOP confab will lead to a coronavirus outbreak.
A University of North Florida survey found that 58 percent of Jacksonville residents somewhat or strongly oppose President Donald Trump’s decision to move his coronation to Duval County. Unsurprisingly, Democrats are especially against the plan; 90 percent said they don’t want it, while 81 percent of Republicans support it.
“National nominating conventions are polarizing events, and unsurprisingly the levels of support for Jacksonville hosting the RNC varies dramatically by partisanship,” said Michael Binder stated, director of the Public Opinion Research Lab at UNF. “Under the backdrop of a global pandemic that appears to have come more fervently to Florida, the opposition to this event being hosted locally seems much more concerning.
The angst over the public health implications of hosting a large-scale indoor event for several days is bipartisan. Seven in 10 Jacksonville voters, including 91 percent of Democrats and 42 percent of Republicans, said they’re concerned the convention could lead to new transmissions of the coronavirus.
Trump opted to move the convention to Jacksonville earlier this month after North Carolina officials could not guarantee significant coronavirus-related restrictions if the event stayed in Charlotte.
About 65 percent of residents are also worried about protests at the convention, the survey found.
The convention is planned for Aug. 24 through Aug. 27.
UNF surveyed more than 2,500 people from June 17-22. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 1.95.