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Polling on key elements of the democratic economy

Democratic Ownership Democracy & Governance

YouGov in March 2019 conducted this poll for The Democracy Collaborative on several key questions related to aspects of the democratic economy, including support for worker ownership, public enterprises and democratic control over key economic activities.

On this page are some highlights of that poll. Click here for a special report on our polling about worker ownership. A total of 1,132 registered voters were surveyed.

The democratic economy

Mandating local governments to use publicly owned nonprofit banks rather than private banking corporations
38%
15%
22%
 

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Requiring large companies to put 2% of their shares into a workers fund each year, up to a maximum of 50 percent
47%
29%
10%
 

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Requiring large companies to put 10% of their shares into a workers fund, up to a maximum of 50 percent
43%
28%
11%
 

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Permitting the US Postal Service to provide basic banking services like check cashing and loans
48%
22%
11%
 

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Instating citizen ownership of public utilities, in which the customers of a utility are its shareholders
55%
12%
16%
 

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Instating government ownership of public utilities, in which elected representatives make decisions for public utilities
21%
49%
14%
 

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The creation of a federal “social wealth fund” that makes investments and uses the profits to pay a substantial dividend to every resident
57%
15%
12%
 

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Providing incentives and assistance to businesses that grant ownership stakes to their workers
58%
12%
12%
 

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Providing incentives and assistance to owners who transfer their businesses to their workers upon retirement
55%
13%
12%
 

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Requiring business owners to allow their workers a chance to buy the business if it is being sold or closed
69%
11%
7%
 

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Allowing the government to buy fossil fuel plants at fair market value and shut them down to keep carbon emissions within safe limits
38%
32%
12%
 

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Allowing the government to buy fossil fuel plants at fair market value if the government is also able to create new jobs for affected workers
47%
27%
11%
 

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Local governments creating affordable housing, including dedicated land trusts that are only used for the purpose of affordable housing
48%
22%
13%
 

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A program to help city governments across America build new, high-quality homes and rent them out at affordable prices
55%
24%
7%
 

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Government assistance to help vital community organizations purchase as much as possible from local businesses
60%
14%
9%
 

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Requiring vital community organizations to purchase as much as possible from local businesses
60%
16%
9%
 

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Public pensions

Even if it’s not exactly right, which of the following comes closer to your view?

Public pension funds are for the public benefit, and should be invested in businesses that grow the local economy rather than serve a few gamblers on Wall Street
41%
Public pension funds are for the public benefit, and should be invested in wherever they will have the highest annual yield, even if that means investing outside the local community
36%
Not sure
23%
 

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The next financial crash

Even if it’s not exactly right, which of the following comes closer to your view?

In the event of another financial catastrophe like the Great Recession, the government should reorganize failing banks as public institutions rather than prop them up in the hands of their shareholders
53%
In the event of another financial catastrophe like the Great Recession, the government should do whatever it takes to keep the economy running, even if it means bailing out banks and their shareholders rather than letting major banks fail
19%
Not sure
27%
 

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The federal deficit

Even if it’s not exactly right, which of the following comes closer to your view?

The government should worry more about basic social needs like healthcare and housing, even if it means more deficit spending
50%
The government needs to relieve our tax burden by cutting the deficit, even if it means scaling back basic social programs for healthcare and housing
32%
Not sure
18%
 

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Economic rights

Which of the following do you believe everyone should have the right to, even if it means government intervention to assure they are available?

An income that can support them and their family
65%
30%
6%
 
A job that pays at minimum a living wage
68%
27%
5%
 
Affordable housing
68%
27%
6%
 

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