August 24, 2021

Slight majority of voters approve of governor’s, president’s handling of COVID-19

A poll of New Mexico voters showed that 51 percent approved of both Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and President Joe Biden’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The poll, conducted by Public Policy Polling for NM Political Report, found that 44 percent disapproved of Biden’s handling of the pandemic, while just 41 percent disapproved of Lujan Grisham’s. Both are Democrats.

Related: Poll: Lujan Grisham at 46% approval, 45% disapproval

Lujan Grisham has been in charge of New Mexico throughout the pandemic and instituted lockdowns, mask mandates and other orders to slow the spread of COVID-19 beginning last March.

Last week, the governor announced a new mask mandate for public indoor spaces. This announcement came after the poll was conducted.

Biden, meanwhile, started his term on Jan. 20, ten months after most of the country imposed restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19. 

A large majority of Democrats approved of the handling of COVID-19 from both, with 88 percent of Democrats approving of Biden’s handling of COVID-19 and 81 percent approving of Lujan Grisham’s handling of the crisis.

More Republicans approved of Lujan Grisham’s response than Biden’s—15 percent for Lujan Grisham to 8 percent for Biden. Meanwhile, 79 percent of Republicans disapproved of Lujan Grisham’s COVID-19 response, while 87 percent disapproved of Biden’s response.

A slight majority of independents, 51 percent in both cases, disapproved of the job performance of Lujan Grisham and Biden, while 39 percent disapproved of Biden’s response and 42 percent disapproved of Lujan Grisham’s response.

The poll also found that most Hispanic or Latino New Mexicans, 63 percent for Biden and 57 percent for Lujan Grisham, approved of the responses to COVID-19, while 30 percent disapproved of Biden’s response and 29 percent disapproved of Lujan Grisham’s response.

A majority of white New Mexicans disapproved of the COVID-19 responses from both—53 percent for Biden and 51 percent for Lujan Grisham, while 43 percent approved of Biden’s response and 44 percent approved of Lujan Grisham’s response.

The poll also showed that more voters disapproved of Lujan Grisham’s handling of the economy than approved—46 percent disapproved to 42 percent who approved.

The poll of 682 New Mexico voters took place on August 16 and 17. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.8 percent for topline questions.