Voters in Minnesota overwhelmingly support President Clinton's proposal to protect most of the remaining roadless areas in America's National Forests. A 76 percent majority of Minnesota voters favor the administration's plan, including half of voters (50 percent) who strongly favor the plan. Twenty-one (21) percent of Minnesota voters oppose the plan (including just 10 percent who strongly oppose).
Support for the proposal to protect roadless areas is broad-based, encompassing strong majorities of voters across the state. Voters in the Twin Cities area support the plan by the widest margin (78 percent to 18 percent), however majorities of voters in the South and Central areas (77 percent) and in the North (72 percent) also support the plan. Seventy-seven (77) percent of voters in urban and suburban areas support the plan to protect roadless areas, along with 78 percent of voters in small towns and 73 percent of voters in rural communities.
As shown in the following chart, a diverse coalition of voters support the administration's proposal, including 86 percent of Democrats, 75 percent of independents, and 64 percent of Republicans. Additionally, 70 percent of voters who hunt and fish support the proposal to protect roadless areas in the National Forests.
Clinton administration proposal to protect remaining
wild but unprotected roadless areas in National Forest lands
|Hunt and Fish
The current proposal would protect an additional two percent of National Forest lands in Minnesota from new roads and industrial activities. Voters support the increased protection for Minnesota's forests by an even wider margin than they support the overall proposal: Eighty-three (83) percent of voters support the increased protection of National Forest lands in Minnesota, including a 56 percent majority who strongly favor additional protection for the state's forests. A broad range of voters support protecting additional land in Minnesota, including 81 percent of voters in rural areas and 76 percent of voters who hunt and fish.
Half of Minnesota voters (51 percent) are aware that logging, mining, and other industrial activities are allowed on National Forest lands. A 57 percent majority oppose such industrial activities on forest lands, including 33 percent who strongly oppose. A third (34 percent) of Minnesota voters favor allowing industrial activities on National Forest lands, particularly voters in rural areas (44 percent). However, even voters who favor allowing industrial activities in National Forest lands support the President's proposal to protect the remaining roadless areas (59 percent to 38 percent).
A majority of Minnesota voters (52 percent) believe that the United States does not have enough protected National Forest land. A third of voters (33 percent) say that the country has about the right amount of protected land, and just 7 percent believe too much land is protected.
Twenty-nine (29) percent of the land in Minnesota's National Forests is permanently protected from logging and other development, compared to just 18 percent of protected land in all of the National Forests. Fifty-one (51) percent of voters feel that Minnesota has about the right amount of protected National Forest land, 34 percent say that not enough land is protected, and just 9 percent say that too much land is protected.
Two-thirds of voters (67 percent) would be more likely to vote for their Congressional Representative if he or she supported the plan and 11 percent would be less likely. Thirteen (13) percent volunteered that it would make no difference. A majority of voters in each of the state's eight congressional districts are more likely to vote for their representative if they supported the proposal to protect most of the remaining roadless areas in America's National Forests.