If it's in the News, it's in our Polls. Public opinion polling since 2003.


Wisconsin Voters Oppose Weakening Collective Bargaining Rights in General But Strongly Support Specific Changes

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

As the dispute over Governor Scott Walker’s budget cutting proposals continues, Wisconsin voters remain strongly opposed to “weakening collective bargaining rights” but are very supportive of substantial changes in the collective bargaining process.

Consistent with a survey conducted  last week, a new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in Wisconsin finds that just 39% favor a proposal to weaken the collective bargaining rights of state employees. Fifty-seven percent (57%) are opposed. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

As part of the collective bargaining process, however, just 19% believe that unions should be allowed to require a local school district to buy health insurance coverage from a union-created insurance company. Three times as many (57%) are opposed.

The Wisconsin Education Association, the state teachers union, has created a not-for-profit insurance company called the WEA Trust. The stated purpose of the WEA Trust is to provide insurance and retirement and investment services to Wisconsin public school employees and their families. Forty-six percent (46%) of Wisconsin voters believe it is good for the state that the union formed a non-profit insurance company like the WEA Trust. Just 30% believe it is bad.

But some people claim the WEA Trust transfers money to the union that created it through marketing contracts and other business relationships. The WEA Trust says it does not transfer money to the union for political purposes. If a union is negotiating with a school district over who should provide health insurance coverage for its members, 76% of the state's voters believe the union should be required to disclose all financial relationships between the union and the WEA Trust. Only 12% disagree, and 12% are not sure.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls).  Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 500 Likely Voters in Wisconsin was conducted on March 7, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.


Become a member and get full access to all articles and polls starting at $3.95/month.

Rasmussen Reports is a media company specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion information.

We conduct public opinion polls on a variety of topics to inform our audience on events in the news and other topics of interest. To ensure editorial control and independence, we pay for the polls ourselves and generate revenue through the sale of subscriptions, sponsorships, and advertising. Nightly polling on politics, business and lifestyle topics provides the content to update the Rasmussen Reports web site many times each day. If it's in the news, it's in our polls. Additionally, the data drives a daily update newsletter and various media outlets across the country.

Some information, including the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and commentaries are available for free to the general public. Subscriptions are available for $3.95 a month or 34.95 a year that provide subscribers with exclusive access to more than 20 stories per week on upcoming elections, consumer confidence, and issues that affect us all. For those who are really into the numbers, Platinum Members can review demographic crosstabs and a full history of our data.

To learn more about our methodology, click here.