By Mary Rooke
A majority of likely U.S. voters surveyed said the rising energy cost is more concerning than the urgency to combat climate change.
Eighty-two percent of likely U.S. voters said they were very or somewhat concerned about rising energy and gasoline prices, according to the latest Rasmussen Reports poll sponsored by the Heartland Institute. Only 14% of voters said they were not very or not concerned about the rising costs.
The same respondents, 50%, said climate change was very or somewhat likely to be catastrophic for humans, plants, and animals over the next 100 years, according to the survey.
Still, 60% surveyed said they would favor legislation that would require the federal government to increase oil and gas drilling in the United States. Only 30% said they would oppose a bill to expand drilling, according to the poll. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: GOP Campaign Arm To Sell Biden-Themed Gas Canisters As Gas Prices Stay High)
Fifty-two percent of voters said the U.S. Congress and President Joe Biden should increase oil and gas drilling in the U.S. In contrast, only 34% said the two branches should focus on limiting carbon dioxide emissions, the survey shows.
Director of Arthur B. Robinson Center on Climate and Environmental Policy at the Heartland Institute, H. Sterling Burnett, told Rasmussen that rising costs weaken national support for climate change initiatives.
“When push comes to shove, polls consistently show energy and economic security trump climate change for a majority of the public when asked which is more important,” said Burnett. “Oil and gas remain for the foreseeable future, vital to maintaining our present standard of living and lifestyles and to ensure continued economic and national security.”
The results by party show that 74% of Republicans and 54% of Independents believe the Biden Administration should be creating policy aimed at increasing oil and gas drilling nationally. A majority of Democratic voters, 54%, still say combatting climate change should be the national focus despite rising costs.
The poll surveyed 1,004 likely U.S. voters from Apr. 28-May 2 with a margin of error of +/- 3%.
Mary Rooke (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a staff writer with The Daily Caller.
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