A new poll has found that a majority of Iowa residents support a state gas tax increase in order to fund the construction and maintenance of state highways.

The Loras College poll released February 3 surveyed 1,200 registered voters who participated in the 2014 general election. Participants were called between January 21-26, 2015 and queried on several issues facing the state, including a recent proposal by legislators to increase the state gas tax by ten cents-per-gallon to generate new transportation funding.

The poll found that:

  • Most voters (52.8 percent) support increasing the state gas tax, while 39 percent are against raising the tax and 6.8 percent are undecided;
  • 45.2 percent of respondents who identified as Republican support increasing the state gas tax, with 48.8 percent opposed and 5.4 percent undecided;
  • 62.1 percent of respondents who identified as Democrat support increasing the state gas tax, with 30.6 percent opposed and 7.1 percent undecided;
  • 56.9 percent of respondents who did not identify with any party support increasing the state gas tax, with 34.5 percent opposed and 8.6 percent undecided.

480 respondents identified as Republican, of which:

  • 165 self-identified as Socially Conservative Republicans;
  • 52 as Libertarian Republicans;
  • 117 as Mainstream Republicans;
  • 97 as Tea Party Republicans; and
  • 12 refused to answer.

396 respondents identified as Democrat, of which:

  • 36 self-identified as Very Liberal Democratic;
  • 131 as Liberal Democratic;
  • 158 as Moderate Democratic;
  • 49 as Conservative Democratic;
  • 18 as unsure; and
  • 4 refused to answer.

Christopher Budzisz, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Politics and Director of the Loras College Poll, noted that those who identified as Tea Party Republicans were the only segment strongly opposed to a state gas tax increase (67 percent against, 27.8 percent in favor). The second largest Republican segment polled (Mainstream Republicans) showed as being 59 percent in favor of a gas tax increase. The two other Republican groups who self-identified were opposed by margins of less than 8 percent. Democrats across the board were in favor of the increase, with the slimmest margin being in those who were unsure about self-identification (50 percent in favor).

To view the results of the Loras College poll, visit: http://loras.edu/About-Loras/News-Events/News/2015/Majority-Supports-Gas-Tax-Increase-to-Fund-Roads,.aspx?8