The new Economist/YouGov poll is out (previous polls here), and it includes several questions on the disaster in the Gulf and offshore drilling.
Of particular interest, 48% of those who are familiar with the spill think BP knowingly violated oil drilling regulations in advance of the disaster. Just 20% disagreed and 32% were not sure. As the DOJ’s investigation unfolds, we can expect a good portion of those who were not sure to move over to the ‘knowingly violated regulations’ camp. Coupled with the company’s dismal favorability ratings among Americans, this does not bode well for the future of BP in the United States.
The crosstabs (click for full size) for this question show that liberals, Democrats and those 65+ were most likely to conclude that BP knowingly violated drilling regulations:
In another question, they explored attitudes toward various energy sources:
Interestingly, just 36% of Democrats supported expanding the nation’s fleet of nuclear power plants.
Finally, the poll found that support for increased offshore drilling continues to erode, dipping below 50% for the first time:
The full results of the poll are below can be found here.