NHJ SURVEY: Readers Split on Gambling, Cigarette Tax, and Immigration Reform; Overwhelmingly Oppose Fiscal Cliff Deal, UNH Spending and More Gun Control

According to a survey of NH Journal readers, the prospect of casino gaming in New Hampshire gets mixed results, but there is no mistaking the passion against further gun control in New Hampshire.

Over 1,100 people participated in the survey covering state and federal issues.

In one of the biggest state issues facing the New Hampshire legislature this year, casino gaming produced a surprising set of results. When we asked readers whether the state should have one casino up north, one down south, one in each location or none at all, 42% said “NO casinos in New Hampshire”. Running just a few points behind at 38% was a casino up north AND down south. Only 15% want a casino down south in Salem and 4% want just one casino up north. The debate over casino gaming will heat up this month when the Governor is expected to announce casinos as part of her budget when she gives her budget address on February 14.

In another revenue related state issue, Governor Hassan and the Democrats campaigned on increasing the state’s cigarette tax but the majority of NH Journal readers don’t like that idea. The state’s tax is due to go up 10 cents this summer unless the legislature takes action to cut the tax, and 52% of our readers want the tax to stay where it is today. However, with a Democrat House and a Democrat Governor that is nothing more than a fantasy for anti-taxers.

Democrats also campaigned on increasing funding to the University System in the next budget. This is another issue in which NH Journal readers disagree with a whopping 67% voting “Do NOT increase UNH spending”.

NH Journal readers want to send a message to legislators on the issue of estimating revenue for the next biennial budget: 61% say to be conservative with a static estimate, and 36% say that the state should be pessimistic and use lower estimates than the last biennium. Only 3% of our readers say the state should increase revenue estimates over the last state budget.

If you’re looking for referendum issue from our readers then you’ve found it with gun control. A resounding 75% of our readers vote “we have enough gun restrictions in New Hampshire.” Only 13% say “we need more gun control” and of those 12% who chose “other” most say “reduce gun control”.

On the Fiscal Cliff vote from the lame duck Congress last month the NH Journal readers make their position clear: an astounding 76% said there should have been “significant spending cuts” attached to the deal. Only 5% of NH Journal readers are “Happy with Fiscal Cliff Deal”, 6% say taxes should have been higher and 13% say taxes should not have been raised at all. Former Congressman Frank Guinta was the lone member of New Hampshire’s congressional delegation to vote against the Fiscal Cliff deal.

In the final question of immigration reform, NH Journal readers are closely divided. When asked if they support the Senator Marco Rubio’s plan of securing the borders first, then allowing amnesty, 47% of readers agree. However, 43% of readers say “No, I don’t believe we should ever allow amnesty of any level.” Over 10% chose “other” in which answers range from “border security has been a joke for 50 years & won’t change which is why I don’t support the Rubio Plan”, to “Amnesty with no secured borders”, to “Should enforce the current laws.”

Stay tuned for more surveys in the months ahead, including asking your thoughts on the office that some Republicans should run for in 2014. The jockeying has already begun for many Republican candidates who want to take on US Senate Jeanne Shaheen, Governor Maggie Hassan, and Congresswomen Kuster and Shea Porter.

NOTE: We want to apologize for not giving an option of “Less gun control” on question #5.

Author: Staff Reporter

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