Novel coronavirus, old partisanship: COVID-19 attitudes and behaviors in the United States and Canada Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • We utilize nationally representative surveys from the United States and Canada to examine the partisan divide in COVID-19 attitudes and behaviours in both countries. The first cases of COVID-19 in both the US and Canada occurred around the same time, but government responses were starkly different. We explore politically salient assessments of governmental performance in both countries, as well as general concern regarding COVID-19 and declarations of changes to daily routines undertaken in response to the pandemic. We find strong partisan differences in evaluations of the government’s response to COVID-19 and confidence in its ability to handle the crisis. We also find partisan differences in concern and behavioural responses to the pandemic in both countries. However, the behavioural differences are small, suggesting that while overtly political assessments are strongly partisan this polarization is dampened down when it comes to actual behavioural responses to the pandemic.

publication date

  • July 9, 2020