ActiVote Poll shows we don’t want to “spring forward”

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ActiVote Poll shows we don’t want to “spring forward”

On Sunday morning March 10th, at 2am, all of the continental U.S. except for Arizona will move the clock forward to start Daylight Saving Time 2024. For a few days we will hear complaints about clocks that have not been adjusted, an hour of sleep that has been missed and darkness in the morning.

Given the many complaints about Daylight Saving Time, both when we “spring forward” and when we will “fall backward” again just two days before this year’s presidential election in November, we wondered what the U.S. voters think about daylight savings. And the short answer is: virtually nobody wants it.

We asked 1546 ActiVote users the following question about daylight saving time.

Which of these statements best reflects your opinion about Daylight Saving Time?

  • DST should be made permanent throughout the full year.
  • DST should remain as it is today.
  • DST should be left to the States
  • DST should be discontinued at some point.
  • DST should be immediately discontinued.

A significant majority of 58% wants to get rid of it immediately. Another 23% wishes to make it permanent, which means, getting rid of it while effectively “moving” every state one time zone east. And from then on: no more changes in spring or fall.

Stated otherwise: 58% want to get rid of Daylight Saving Time in winter and 23% want to get rid of it in summer. Only 8% are happy with how things are today. The other 12% are less committed: leave it to the states, or change it at some point.

Interestingly, this sentiment is shared across the population. Young and old, men and women, republicans and democrats, rich and poor, rural and urban.

The suburbanites are leaning more towards getting rid of DST during winter, while both rural and urban people lean more towards getting rid of DST during summer.

There is a small age difference, where older people would rather keep the extra evening light, while younger people like the extra light in the morning.

There are very few topics where Democrats and Republicans agree more with each other than with Independents, but here it is: Democrats and Republicans fully united, with Independents deviating only by a small margin.

The senate has tried to eliminate daylight saving time through the Sunshine Protection Act. It has gotten stuck in committee, despite bipartisan support for the measure. Perhaps they are worried that the same will happen as in 1973/1974 when it was temporarily eliminated before it was reintroduced as public support for the measure dropped sharply.

Perhaps the different preferences for the two options for permanent time will kill the common desire to stop changing our clocks twice a year. And with that, DST may have longer staying power than most of the country would like.