Floridians Want More Information on Pros and Cons of Amendments, Believe Amendments Are Put on Ballot by Special Interest Groups and Support Moving to an Open Primary System as Revealed in the 2016 USF-Nielsen Sunshine State Survey
Survey findings about amendment information and sources, voting rights of felons, open or closed primaries, election equipment, voter information and voting convenience shared by University of South Florida Professor Susan MacManus
TAMPA, Fla. (Oct. 12, 2016) – More than 70 percent of Floridians believe constitutional amendments are put on the ballot by well-financed special interest groups, and 60 percent say they do not get enough information on proposed constitutional amendments, according to the 2016 USF-Nielsen Sunshine State Survey. In addition, 67 percent of voters believe Florida should move to an open primary system where independents may vote in partisan primaries.
Distinguished University Professor Susan MacManus at the University of South Florida College of Arts and Sciences released findings on Floridians' opinions on election issues. The next data release scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 18 will focus on education, health, transportation, and recreation.
"These results are very instructive to election officials and advocates on both sides of proposed constitutional amendments. Citizens say they need more information about the voting process and the pros and cons of amendments that will be on the ballot," MacManus said. "Looking ahead, there is also strong support for moving to an open primary system—significant since the survey was taken shortly after the August primary."
Hot topic issue results are:
Infographic: Enough Information on Constitutional Amendments
Infographic: Source of Constitutional Amendments Put on Ballots
Infographic: Restoring Voting Rights of Felons
Infographic: Open or Closed Primaries
Infographic: State Performance on Dependable Election Equipment
Infographic: State Performance on Convenience to Vote
The full data release on election issues is posted on the USF-Nielsen Sunshine State Survey website, including a Quick Facts summary, infographics in .jpg format for download, and data analysis with cross tabs. Additional data reveals views about voter registration status, reasons for not registering, and who is eligible to vote in nonpartisan primaries.
Results of this survey are based on 1,248 telephone interviews conducted by The Nielsen Company Sept. 1-19, 2016 with a random sample of adults, aged 18 and older, residing in Florida households. For a random sample of 1,248 adults, one can say with 95 percent confidence that the maximum margin of sampling error is ± 2.77 percentage points. Refer to the USF-Nielsen Sunshine State Survey website for complete methodology.
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6 out of 10 Floridians don't think there's enough information on proposed constitutional amendments @SunStateSurvey
71% believe amendments are put on ballot by well-financed special interest groups @SunStateSurvey
Most in favor of keeping status quo on restoring a felon's voting rights @SunStateSurvey
67% of Florida registered voters support an open primary system allowing independents to vote in partisan primaries @SunStateSurvey
State receives good marks for voting convenience and dependable voting equipment #sunshinestatesurvey
More Floridians want better information about election laws and procedures @SunStateSurvey
The USF-Nielsen Sunshine State Survey is the most anticipated annual survey of Floridians on a wide range of issues affecting the state of Florida and serves as our state leaders' report card. Conducted by the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of South Florida and Nielsen, this survey has become a critical source of citizen opinions on key issues facing this rapidly changing state--the nation's third largest. The series of questions asked annually since 2006 provides leaders and academics in the public, private and nonprofit sectors with much ‐ needed trend line data, while questions on newly ‐ emerging issues give leaders an invaluable baseline look at where a wide cross ‐ section of our state's residents stand on them.