Welcome to Pollapalooza, our weekly survey roundup.
Today is the opening ceremony of the 2020 Olympic Games, which have been delayed by almost a year due to the coronavirus pandemic. But not everyone is happy that the Games are finally happening.
Japan, host country of the Olympics, has been slow to vaccinate its population against the coronavirus and is experiencing a spike in COVID-19 cases which have led to the declaration of a state of emergency and the decision to ban spectators most Olympic events. Against this background, a Morning Consult poll conducted July 15-16 found that only 22% of Japanese adults supported holding the Olympics as planned, while 41% believed they should be canceled and 21% believed they were should be postponed again. A few days later, the Asahi Shimbun, a Japanese newspaper, published similar findings: only 33 percent of those polled were in favor of holding the Olympics, while 55 percent were against it. Worse yet, the Japanese believed between 68% and 21% that the Games would not be “safe and secure”.
Opposition to the Games was particularly strong in Japan, but it wasn’t the only country to feel this way. From May 21 to June 4, Ipsos surveyed adults in 28 countries and found that the average country believed the Olympics should not be held amid the pandemic, from 57% to 43%. South Korea (86 percent to 14 percent) and Japan (78 percent to 22 percent) were the most skeptical of the Olympics, while Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Russia were the furthest away. comfortable watching the Games unfold.
Americans were divided, according to Ipsos: 52% wanted the Olympics to be held, while 48% thought they shouldn’t. In a Morning Consult poll from July 9 to 13, fewer Americans said they thought the Games should be canceled or postponed (just 27%), but that wasn’t because an overwhelming majority thought the Games should be canceled or postponed (just 27%). the Games should go as planned: only 45% said so, a share similar to that found by Ipsos. (The remaining 28% either did not know or did not have an opinion.)
There were also big differences in each country’s interest in the Olympics. According to Ipsos, India was the most excited about the Games (70 percent of Indian respondents said they were very or somewhat interested in them), while Belgium (28 percent) and South Korea (30 percent) were the least interested.
While Ipsos found that the Japanese did not have much interest (32%) in the Olympics, other pollsters found that most of them still plan to follow the Games. Morning Consult found that 53% of Japanese adults planned to watch the Olympics on TV, and the Asahi Shimbun also found that 56% wanted to go online.
Investigations in the United States were a bit more consistent. Fifty-one percent of American adults told Morning Consult that they plan to watch some or a large portion of the Olympics on TV, about as many as the 48 percent who told Ipsos they were. very or somewhat interested in the Games. However, that number was only 37% in a YouGov poll from July 16-19 in the United States.
Pollsters also asked which events various countries were most interested in following. And in the 28 countries in the Ipsos poll, 30% of respondents chose football (better known as soccer) as one of their top three events, 27% chose athletics / track and field, and 22 % water sports.
But again, each country has its own preferences. For example, 63 percent of Malaysians ranked badminton as one of their top three events; 38% of Chinese adults have done the same with table tennis. The Japanese, on the other hand, look forward to aquatics, track and field and baseball / softball. These may have a special place in the heart of Japan, as they were reinstated as Olympic events after a 13-year hiatus due to their popularity in Japan, and the Japanese are expected to win a medal in each. Indeed, according to Morning Consult, 21% of Japanese adults are very interested in watching baseball / softball at the Tokyo Olympics (the highest percentage of all sports), and 28% are somewhat interested.
Meanwhile, according to Morning Consult, Americans are most interested in watching gymnastics (62 percent very or somewhat interested) and swimming (56 percent), two events the United States has always excelled at. (Unfortunately for the US national pastime, only 44% said they were interested in baseball / softball, placing it in eighth place behind diving, track and field, beach volleyball, basketball and volleyball.)
Much of the American love affair with gymnastics may be down to one person: Simone Biles. Morning Consult found that the artistic gymnast was both the most famous Olympian (67 percent name recognition) and the most popular (51 percent favored) in the United States (footballer Megan Rapinoe and swimmer Katie Ledecky were the finalists.) Likewise, Ipsos has found Biles to be, by far, the athlete Americans are most excited to watch in Tokyo. Even more impressive, when Morning Consult asked Americans an open-ended question about their favorite sports figure in a July 1-6 poll, Biles placed fourth – behind only Tom Brady, Michael Jordan and LeBron James. This means that, over the next two weeks, Americans will witness no less than one of the sport’s biggest stars on their biggest stage.
Other sounding bites
- As the Delta variant of the coronavirus spreads, an Ipsos / Axios poll revealed concerns about the resumption of COVID-19: 39% of Americans believed returning to their pre-pandemic life would pose a significant risk or moderate for their health and well-being. being, up from 28 percent at the end of June. However, there is little evidence that Americans change their behavior to accommodate: The share of Americans who at least sometimes leave home with a mask is essentially the same as in the latest Ipsos survey wave. (52% versus 55%). And similarly, the share of Americans who visited friends or relatives in the past week has not changed (67% vs. 68%).
- Despite some groundbreaking cases of vaccinated people contracting COVID-19, coronavirus vaccines are highly effective against the Delta variant, and there is no evidence that vaccinated people will need a booster anytime soon. Nonetheless, 62 percent of vaccinated adults told YouGov / Yahoo News they would get another injection if they could. Only 18 percent said they would not, while 20 percent were unsure.
- The Canadian government announced this week that it will reopen the Canada-U.S. Border to fully vaccinated travelers on August 9. The move should be welcomed in the United States: According to Canadian pollster Leger, Americans supported reopening the border to all travelers at the end of August, 74 to 26 percent (the question did not mention compulsory vaccination). However, Canadians are much more nervous about this prospect: Léger found that only 48% of them were in favor of reopening the border and 52% were against it.
- A YouGov / CBS News poll found Americans are ambivalent about how to change election laws: 38% said voting should be made easier, 35% said there should be no change, and 27% said stated that it should be made more difficult. But party-ID crosstabs reveal why the question inspires such acrimony: 60% of Republicans said they believed making it easier to vote would help Democrats win more elections, while 61% of Democrats believed making it easier to vote. the harder vote would help Republicans win more.
According to FiveThirtyEight’s Presidential Approval Track, 52.2% of Americans approve of Biden’s job as president, while 42.8% disapprove (a net approval rating of +9.4 points). At the same time last week, 51.1 percent approved and 42.6 percent disapproved (a net approval rating of +8.5 points). A month ago, Biden had an approval rating of 51.8% and a disapproval rating of 42.6%, for a net approval rating of +9.2 points.