Poll: Voters reluctant to invest in rail
By Howard Wilkinson • email@example.com • January 25, 2010
The bad news for proponents of a passenger rail line that would link Cincinnati, Columbus and Cleveland is that a new Cincinnati Enquirer/Ohio Newspaper Poll shows a majority of Ohio voters don’t support spending state dollars to run the rail line.
The good news, though, is that proponents don’t believe a public opinion poll will have any impact on whether Ohio gets the $564 million in federal stimulus money it is seeking to start up the project.
…The poll, conducted by the University of Cincinnati’s Institute for Policy Research, interviewed 808 likely voters from around Ohio between Jan. 13-19. The phone survey found that 52 percent said they oppose investing state money in the project, while 41 percent said they approved. Six percent told the poll they are undecided. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.
A 41 percent approval really doesn’t seem that bad to me. Rail and transit projects are always controversial for some reason, and it’s probably hard to find 41 percent support for any kind of government spending right now. I’m wondering what percentage of the people actually live near one of the proposed stations. It would be interesting to see how support varies by geography.