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Louisiana Survey: Majority want a more active state government

While two-thirds of Louisianans believe state government is almost always wasteful and ineffective, a majority of those who participated in this year’s Louisiana Survey—57%—want to increase the scope of government action to solve the state’s problems.

The third installment of Louisiana Survey, an annual six-part survey produced by the Reilly Center for Media & Public Affairs at LSU, was released Friday. It shows that Louisianans are ambivalent about the role of state government in Louisiana, says Michael Henderson, director of the Public Policy Research Lab, which conducted the survey.

Opinions were more mixed on state government’s role in regulating business, with 51% saying that government regulation of business usually does more harm than good while 45% believe regulations are necessary to protect the public interest.

Additional results of the survey include:

  • 47% believe state government cannot afford to do much more to help people in need.
  • 50% believe state government should do more to help people even if it means spending more money.

The Louisiana Survey has been conducted each year since 2003 and was conducted twice in 2006 to measure of public opinion in Louisiana. This year’s survey included 852 Louisiana respondents and was conducted via telephone between Jan. 26 and March 3. It has a margin of error of 3.4 percentage points. See the full results of the third installment.

The survey’s first installment showed a growing share of Louisianans are pessimistic about the direction the state, and a large majority of respondents believe the state is more politically divided than in the past. The second installment showed that Louisianans favor tweaks to state income tax rates over sales tax changes to address the “fiscal cliff.”

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