Americans Want Roads And Bridges. Other Infrastructure Priorities, Not So Much

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Andrew Trunsky Political Reporter
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Over 80% of Americans support proposals to fund the repairs of roads, bridges, ports and drinking water pipes, but support for most other infrastructure issues is sharply split along party lines, new polling shows.

President Joe Biden and a bipartisan Senate group compromised on a $973 billion infrastructure plan in June, but Democrats are simultaneously working to pass a $3.5 trillion reconciliation package that allocates funding for child care, tax credits, schools, climate change and more. Many of those provisions are far less popular among Republicans, according to polling from the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Opinion Research.

Biden’s approval on infrastructure overall stands at 55%, but has the support of just 22% of Republicans.

Support for repairing roads, bridges and ports comes from 83% of Americans, while 79% support funding for new pipes or replacing lead ones that carry substantial health risks. Three-quarters of Americans — and 62% of Republicans — support funding for caregivers attending to elderly Americans, while two-thirds of Americans and nearly 60% of Republicans support funding the nation’s electric grid following more frequent extreme weather events. (RELATED: Smoke From West Coast Fires Chokes New York City)

The Brent Spence Bridge, which spans the Ohio River on the Ohio-Kentucky border, is considered to be “functionally obsolete” due to the amount of daily traffic it carries, nearly double for its original design. (JEFF DEAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Democrats and Republicans are more split on other provisions, the survey shows. While two-thirds of Americans and 83% of Democrats support funding free preschool programs, just 47% of Republicans say the same.

The numbers are similar regarding affordable housing. While 85% of Democrats and 72% of Independents support government funding for it, only 41% of Republicans agree.

Federal funding for broadband, local public transit, expanded child tax credits and free community college all have over 70% support from Democrats, but just 44%, 42%, 34% and 27% support from Republicans, respectively. All the issues received just over 50% support from Americans overall.

Democrats and Republicans are also divided on how to finance the plans. While 89% of Democrats want to raise taxes on corporations, just 43% of Republicans said the same. (RELATED: Is A Corporate Tax Rate Good For The Economy? Depends Whom You Ask)

That margin is similar when it comes to raising taxes on Americans themselves. While 84% of Democrats want to increase taxes on families making over $400,000 annually, just 40% of Republicans agree.

The survey was conducted from July 15 to 19 among 1,307 American adults, and has a margin of error of 3.7 percentage points.

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