Poll shows Virginians of all demographics support policies providing fiscal relief, HBCU funding

While a recent poll shows a 49% approval rating for Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, his policies — particularly those supporting tax relief and funding for state HBCUs — are garnering higher rates of support from Virginians of all demographics.

The poll showed that 58% of Virginians support Youngkin’s proposal to suspend gas tax for three months. Over 70% support eliminating the state’s portion of the grocery tax, and 79% support increased funding for Virginia’s historically Black colleges and universities.

Though support varied by political party affiliation and race, all groups still showed majority support on these issues. For example, 96% of Black poll respondents supported increased HBCU funding compared to 78% of white respondents.

“The people are always ahead of the leaders,” former Virginia Gov. Douglas Wilder said in a news release published by the L. Douglas Wilder School of Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University, where the poll was conducted and published. Wilder said the positive reception to the grocery and gas tax suspension proposals can be viewed as a “direct response to rising inflation.”

Another issue supported by the majority of poll respondents at 56% is the passing of a recent state law permitting the establishment of privately run and publicly funded college partnership laboratory schools in Virginia.

“Over half of poll respondents support lab schools, indicating Virginians are looking for alternative educational options to what is currently being provided,” Wilder said.

The poll also found that Virginians were about evenly split in terms of how they’d like to see surplus tax revenue spent, with 47% preferring it go to government programs and 42% preferring a one-time cash rebate of $250.

The poll results comprised 813 phone interviews with adult residents of Virginia in late June and early July. Its overall margin of error was about 5.8 points.

Dana Sukontarak

Dana Sukontarak is a Digital Writer/Editor for WTOP.com. She loves haiku poetry, short sci-fi stories and word games. She grew up in Prince George’s County, Maryland, and currently lives in Silver Spring.

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