44% Believe Power to Walk Away More Important Than Right to Vote

ScottRasmussen.com asked 1,001 Registered Voters to choose between a pair of hypothetical states with different rights. In one state, every citizen has an equal voice and vote in a free and fair election system, but you could never move to another state without permission. In the other state, you could live freely and leave at any time, but you did not have the right to vote.

Fifty-six percent (56%) of voters chose the state where they could vote and 44% chose the state where they could leave at any time. Most younger voters (52%) and black voters (56%) opted for the freedom to walk away rather than the right to vote. Western voters were the most likely to opt for walking away while Northeastern voters were more likely to cherish the ballot box.

Wealthier voters were more likely to see value in casting votes, perhaps because they have more influence in the political world than other groups (see crosstab results).

Scott Rasmussen’s latest book makes the case that the power to walk away is more powerful than the right to vote. That’s one reason people are more satisfied with state and local governments than with the federal government. Few people vote in local elections, but their decision to stay or leave places significant constraints on the actions of political leaders.

The power to walk away also played a key role in the women’s suffrage movement as various states competed for residents by offering more political rights to women. And, of course, the United States was founded by people who chose to walk away from an unresponsive king in England.

In practical terms, voters have the most power when they can both vote and walk away.

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The national survey of 1,001 Registered Voters was conducted January 11-12, 2019 by ScottRasmussen.com and HarrisX, a polling company specializing in online surveys (see Methodology). It has a +/- 3.1 percentage point Margin of Error with a 95% level of confidence.

Neither Scott Rasmussen nor ScottRasmussen.com has any relationship with Rasmussen Reports® (see About Us).

Posted in Poll Results

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