Americans broadly support striking auto and Hollywood workers, according to a two-day Reuters/Ipsos poll that concluded Wednesday and found significant support among both Democrats and Republicans.
The poll found that 58% of Americans support the United Auto Workers’ first simultaneous strike against Ford Motor, General Motors and Stellantis, Chrysler’s parent company, for better wages and benefits, while 32% oppose the strike. action and 10% were not sure.
Likewise, 60% of Americans support the double strike by writers and actors to seek better wages and protections in the entertainment industry, while 27% oppose it and 13% are unsure.
The survey found particularly strong support among Democrats, who have traditionally aligned themselves with unions. About 72% of respondents who identified as Democrats said they supported the auto workers strike, and 79% said they supported the Hollywood strike.
A large number of Republicans also said they supported the striking workers, even though their party has traditionally championed pro-business policies and been skeptical of the liberal views of many Hollywood stars.
The poll found that 48% of Republicans supported the auto workers’ strike, while 47% opposed it. Likewise, 46% said they supported the Hollywood strikes and 46% said they did not.
This divide is reflected in the fight for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. Former President Donald Trump, who is leading the race by a wide margin, plans to skip the upcoming candidates’ debate on September 27 and instead give a speech to workers in the auto sector and other members of unions.
Americans support Hollywood and auto worker strikes: poll
Other candidates like Nikki Haley and Tim Scott said autoworkers are asking for too much.
Democratic President Joe Biden, who has sided with the UAW and urged automakers to do more for striking workers, has made outreach to unions a central part of his re-election in 2024. He won 57% of unionized households in the 2020 election. compared to 40% for Trump, according to Edison Research.
The survey comes at a time when the United States is experiencing a surge in union activism. As of August – before the UAW strike – 310,000 American workers participated in work stoppages, putting 2023 on track to be the most active strike year since 2019.
The poll also found broad support for the labor movement in general, even as private sector union membership in the United States remains at historic lows.
About 61% of respondents said unions had improved the quality of life for all Americans, while only 35% said unions were no longer necessary.
Two-thirds of respondents believe that salaries should increase for CEOs and workers alike, one of the key points of the UAW strike.
The online survey of 1,005 American adults was conducted between September 19th and 20th. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points and 6 percentage points for the Democratic and Republican responses.