Texas voters see no conflict between having a healthy
environment and a strong economy
June 12, 2000
Austin -- Texas voters are extremely concerned
about clean air and water and 81 percent say environmental
issues play a role in how they make their voting decision,
according to a statewide poll released today. The Tarrance
Group, Inc poll of 600 likely voters across the state of
Texas indicates a strong commitment to environmental protection
by voters in all parts of the state and across party lines.
The telephone poll was taken between May 30 and June 5,
2000 for the League of Conservation Voters Education Fund.
Texans understand the connection between
a healthy environment and a strong economy. They believe
we can have both. And the vast majority of voters, eighty-one
percent, consider environmental issues when deciding how
to vote, said Margot Clarke, State Director for the LCV
Texas voters want more environmental protection,
not less, Clarke added. Seventy-four percent of Texans believe
that the laws protecting the environment are either not
strong enough and we need stronger laws, or that the laws
are tough enough but are not strictly enforced and should
Highlights of the poll include:
- Voters in
Texas are nearly unanimous (84 percent) in saying that
environmental issues, particularly clean water, clean
air, and open space are important considerations in making
a voting decision.
- When given
a choice, fifty-three percent say they would favor a candidate
who would act in the best interests of the environment
over a candidate who would reduce the regulatory burden
- Clean water
is the environmental issue that Texans are concerned about
the most, with 31 percent naming water quality in an open-ended
question. Air quality followed at 20 percent.
- An overwhelming
majority of Texans (78 percent) do not believe that there
has to be a tradeoff between a clean environment and a
- Texans want
more environmental protection, not less. Seventy-four
percent of Texans believe the laws protecting the environment
are either not strong enough or they believe the laws
are tough enough but are not enforced -- 16% say need
stronger laws and 59% say we need stricter enforcement.
percent of voters think campaign contributions influence
how elected officials vote on environmental issues.
percent of Texas voters agree with the statement that
only mandatory regulations for companies can guarantee
the reduction of pollution that industries emit into the
environment as opposed to 22% who believe that we need
to move from a system of mandatory regulations for companies
concerning pollution to a voluntary system because voluntary
programs are less confrontational and more efficient.
The telephone survey of N=600 registered
Texas voters who are likely to vote in the 2000 election
was commissioned by LCVEF and conducted by The Tarrance
Group, Inc. The survey was conducted between May 30 and
June 5, 2000. A random sample of this type is likely to
yield a margin of error of +/- 4.1 percent.