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New Poll Shows Most Sportsmen Tend To Be Environmentally-Minded Conservatives

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September 25, 2012

New Poll Shows Most Sportsmen Tend To Be Environmentally-Minded Conservatives

By Bob Marshall

A new poll released today reaffirms what previous research has pointed out for years: America's sportsmen strongly favor environmental protections over industrial development, regardless of their political affiliation.

The election-year poll, conducted by Chesapeake Consulting for the National Wildlife Federation, clearly targeted opinions of sportsmen based on their political affiliation. Responses to key fish, wildlife and environmental issues were divided by Republican, Democrat or Independent voters.

While the responses from Democratic sportsmen closely tracked their party's support for those protections in Congress, Republican sportsmen clearly broke with the GOP's recent agenda of rolling back fish and wildlife protections and programs.

Previous polls have returned much the same results, consistently showing sportsmen are national leaders in concerns for environmental protections, as well as early advocates for addressing climate change.

Key findings include:

• They strongly favor restoring Clean Water Act protections to wetlands and waterways.

• They think protection of America’s public lands should be given a priority, even at the risk of limiting the amount of energy supplies.

• They believe global warming is currently occurring and we have a moral responsibility to confront it.

• They overwhelmingly believe the economy can be strengthened and jobs created by investing in renewable energy while reducing global warming pollution.

• They believe fines paid by BP for the Deepwater Horizon disaster should be used to ensure the recovery of fish and wildlife populations in the Gulf of Mexico.

Chesapeake Consulting said of the 800 regularly-voting sportsmen who took the telephone poll, 42 percent indicated they were Republican, 32 percent Independent, and 18 percent Democrat. Of these, 27 percent indicated they split their ticket when voting.

Fifty percent consider themselves conservative, including 22 percent who consider themselves very conservative.

Sixty percent said they vote in every election, with an additional 21 percent indicating they vote in almost all elections.

See the full results of the poll here at 11 a.m.

Comments (10)

Top Rated
All Comments
from rock rat wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I'd think that most sportsmen consider more than one issue when voting. Even though I'm a strongly partisan and active Democrat I break with my party on many issues that involve hunting, such as laws enacted in California eliminating cougar hunting or the effort to eliminate hunting bears with dogs.

My very conservative Republican congressman has worked to restrict the Equal Access to Justice provision which allows radical environmentalists to obstruct our Fish and Wildlife Service in carrying out it's mandate. He's good on this issue yet I won't vote for him because he apposes health care. The health of me, my wife, and my kids comes before all else.

Voting is not a single issue sport.

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from HuskerHunterFisher wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Sounds to me like there needs to be a new Sportsman's Party. I'd join!

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Most people who work in wildlife conservation consider themselves conservative in the political spectrum. The problem is the people who campaign as conservatives are not conservative one bit when it comes to land use or legislation that has to do with environmental policy. Thus I think it creates a new denotative and connotative meaning of the word "conservative". Unfortunately a large majority of voters leave themselves uneducated on the issues when they rely on the connotative meaning on the word.
I also have an issue with the words "global warming" its global "climate change" the shift in climate change in the previous decades are from human interaction. Its funny people think there is some dispute among scientist's on global climate change. There is no dispute every peer reviewed published article on the topic is in consensus, its not a belief its science it can be tested and is predictable.

+7 Good Comment? | | Report
from CL3 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I think the rise of the requirement for Hunter-Trapper Education to get a hunting license is instilling a lot of these principals, and I'm all for it.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from CL3 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Some smart comments here also.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Conservation used to be a bipartisan thing. Both parties are garbage now. Either one used to be much more agreeable decades ago. Corporate interests have taken over both, although it's more obvious on one side than the other.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from redfishunter wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

fliphuntr, refresh my memory. Was the last ice age before or after the industrial revolution?

-4 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

redfish, before what exactly are you trying to disprove with your broad observation?

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Erik Jensen wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

All I can say is it's encouraging. I'm wondering about the word "conservative" in how it applies to people who identified as such in he poll. There was an interesting piece in the NY Times by David Brooks, outlining a difference between money conservatives with an extreme individualistic mentality (dominant in the GOP today) and a sort of traditional conservative that favored limited government but didn't worship money and didn't necessarily hate central government. Instead, this group preferred other institutions as first options - family, church, local government, neighborhood groups and such. I wonder if the sportsmen in the poll identifying as conservative are heavily part of this "traditional conservative" group.

Rock rat is right on, voting is complicated. I've never pulled a lever for a Republican in my life, but I'm lucky as a sportsman with progressive politics to live a state where the Democratic party is heavily pro-hunting and fishing. What would I do if I lived in California ? It'd be terrible. And if it ever happened that a strongly conservationist Republican ran against a pro-labor, but very anti-environmental protection Democrat in my state ? Not likely, but possible. I'd be in the same position as some of the strongly conservationist, but solid GOP sportsmen walking into the voting booth this year...

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from bberg7794 wrote 1 year 28 weeks ago

I consider myself an environmentally-minded conservative, am definitely a sportsman and strongly relate to the list of key findings above. Anyone for bringing back the Bull Moose Party?

What fliphuntr14 said about climate change!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from fliphuntr14 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Most people who work in wildlife conservation consider themselves conservative in the political spectrum. The problem is the people who campaign as conservatives are not conservative one bit when it comes to land use or legislation that has to do with environmental policy. Thus I think it creates a new denotative and connotative meaning of the word "conservative". Unfortunately a large majority of voters leave themselves uneducated on the issues when they rely on the connotative meaning on the word.
I also have an issue with the words "global warming" its global "climate change" the shift in climate change in the previous decades are from human interaction. Its funny people think there is some dispute among scientist's on global climate change. There is no dispute every peer reviewed published article on the topic is in consensus, its not a belief its science it can be tested and is predictable.

+7 Good Comment? | | Report
from rock rat wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I'd think that most sportsmen consider more than one issue when voting. Even though I'm a strongly partisan and active Democrat I break with my party on many issues that involve hunting, such as laws enacted in California eliminating cougar hunting or the effort to eliminate hunting bears with dogs.

My very conservative Republican congressman has worked to restrict the Equal Access to Justice provision which allows radical environmentalists to obstruct our Fish and Wildlife Service in carrying out it's mandate. He's good on this issue yet I won't vote for him because he apposes health care. The health of me, my wife, and my kids comes before all else.

Voting is not a single issue sport.

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Conservation used to be a bipartisan thing. Both parties are garbage now. Either one used to be much more agreeable decades ago. Corporate interests have taken over both, although it's more obvious on one side than the other.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from HuskerHunterFisher wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Sounds to me like there needs to be a new Sportsman's Party. I'd join!

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from CL3 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

I think the rise of the requirement for Hunter-Trapper Education to get a hunting license is instilling a lot of these principals, and I'm all for it.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

redfish, before what exactly are you trying to disprove with your broad observation?

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Erik Jensen wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

All I can say is it's encouraging. I'm wondering about the word "conservative" in how it applies to people who identified as such in he poll. There was an interesting piece in the NY Times by David Brooks, outlining a difference between money conservatives with an extreme individualistic mentality (dominant in the GOP today) and a sort of traditional conservative that favored limited government but didn't worship money and didn't necessarily hate central government. Instead, this group preferred other institutions as first options - family, church, local government, neighborhood groups and such. I wonder if the sportsmen in the poll identifying as conservative are heavily part of this "traditional conservative" group.

Rock rat is right on, voting is complicated. I've never pulled a lever for a Republican in my life, but I'm lucky as a sportsman with progressive politics to live a state where the Democratic party is heavily pro-hunting and fishing. What would I do if I lived in California ? It'd be terrible. And if it ever happened that a strongly conservationist Republican ran against a pro-labor, but very anti-environmental protection Democrat in my state ? Not likely, but possible. I'd be in the same position as some of the strongly conservationist, but solid GOP sportsmen walking into the voting booth this year...

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from bberg7794 wrote 1 year 28 weeks ago

I consider myself an environmentally-minded conservative, am definitely a sportsman and strongly relate to the list of key findings above. Anyone for bringing back the Bull Moose Party?

What fliphuntr14 said about climate change!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from CL3 wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

Some smart comments here also.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from redfishunter wrote 1 year 29 weeks ago

fliphuntr, refresh my memory. Was the last ice age before or after the industrial revolution?

-4 Good Comment? | | Report

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