As the Idaho Legislature reaches its stride in its 2017 general session, Idaho Politics Weekly finds that education is the most important issue before Gem State residents.
In the latest survey by Dan Jones & Associates, 37 percent listed education as the top issue among five listed.
The other issues respondents could choose from were jobs and the economy, healthcare, taxes, and transportation.
Jones found among all residents:
- Jobs and the economy came in second at 31 percent.
- 22 percent picked health care.
- Taxes were favored by 4 percent.
- Transportation came in last at 2 percent.
- And 4 percent didn’t know.
Different demographic groups had some differing views, however.
For example, younger people were concerned about education – both public and higher education.
While older Idahoans not yet on Medicare were most worried about health care – since President Donald Trump and the GOP-controlled Congress are talking about rescinding Obamacare – a backstop for lower-income Idahoans.
Those 18-29 listed their issues like this:
- 48 percent said education, 31 percent said jobs, 15 percent named health care, 3 percent said taxes and 3 percent said transportation.
Those who are 50-59:
- 31 percent said health care, 29 percent said education, 28 percent said jobs, 8 percent said taxes, and 3 percent said transportation.
Partisanship also plays a role:
- Republicans listed education first, at 35 percent.
- But while Democrats agreed education was their No. 1 issue, 47 percent picked that topic.
- Independent voters actually tapped jobs and the economy as their top issue, 37 percent. Education was second at 32 percent.
Among those who self-identified to Jones as being “very conservative,” 39 percent said jobs and the economy were their top issue, 30 percent said education and only 16 percent mentioned health care.
Those who said they were “very liberal,” 41 percent said education, 32 percent said health care, and 24 percent said jobs and the economy.
Jones polled 607 adults from Nov. 18-29. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.98 percent.