New Statewide Poll on Migrant Crisis

Super Tuesday Numbers Include Biden vs Phillips, Trump vs Haley, Elizabeth Warren, and Maura Healey Numbers Included

The Fiscal Alliance Foundation released the results of a new poll today that sampled Massachusetts voters ahead of the state’s March 5th Presidential Primary. The poll asked voters if they plan to vote in the primary and if so, offered several head-to-head matchups. If they were voting in the Democratic primary, voters were asked if they would vote for either President Joe Biden or Congressman Dean Phillips, while those voting in the Republican primary were asked if they were voting for former President Donald Trump or Ambassador Nikki Haley. Biden leads Phillips 74% to 9%. Trump leads Haley 65% to 22%.

Toplines of this poll are available by clicking here.

Full crosstabs of this poll are available by clicking here. 

The poll continued the practice of polling the favorable and unfavorable numbers for U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren and Governor Maura Healey. Senator Warren’s overall favorability stands at 45% and unfavorable at 43%. For comparison’s sake, last July, the Fiscal Alliance Foundation asked voters the same question; at the time, Senator Warren came in with 53% favorable and 39% unfavorable. Last May, the Senator’s numbers were 49% favorable and 44% unfavorable. Meanwhile, Governor Healey’s overall favorable numbers stand at 46%, and unfavorable at 37%. Among unenrolled voters, Governor Healey’s favorability dropped to 33% and unfavorability at 53%. Last year, two separate polls showed Governor Healey’s favorability over 50% and her unfavorability were below 30%.

The poll asked seven questions dealing with the migrant crisis, the right to shelter law, and how tax dollars should be applied. The poll revealed some of the strongest opinions ever recorded by the Fiscal Alliance Foundation in a survey. When asked whether tax dollars should be used to provide the right to shelter law benefit to newly arrived migrants, a majority of voters said no at 53%. That figure was driven by registered Republicans who responded “no” at 90% and unenrolled at 62%, while Democrats were only at 30%. At the beginning of the crisis, Governor Healey asked the public to consider housing recently arrived migrants.

The poll asked voters if they would personally be willing to host newly arrived migrants in their own home, and 79% said no. That strong feeling was shared among all the three major party affiliations with Republicans at 96%, Democrats at 68%, and unrolled at 82%. Taxpayer sentiment on the migrant issue was polled with question 10, where respondents were asked their views on the state continuing to take in migrants at this level despite lack of any sustainable way of funding them going forward. The results of this question were also very extreme at 73% saying no, with agreement from voters from all three parties (GOP 98%, Democrats 59%, and Unenrolled 76%).

The poll also asked voters if they are considering or have considered moving out of the state, which was also asked last year in May by our polling. This poll showed 26% of those polled answered yes, and last year that percentage was at 19%.

“The 2024 picture looks a lot different than even a year ago. Voters are very concerned with the ongoing migrant crisis, nearly 65% of voters blame President Biden or Congress but Governor Healey’s favorability numbers are starting to take a beating. For the first time, the Governor is below 50 percent favorability and the important voting block of unenrolled voters have the Governor upside down. Voters may blame Washington for the migrant crisis but they are not satisfied with some of the policies being proposed on the state level for how to deal with the issue,” stated Paul Diego Craney, spokesperson for the Fiscal Alliance Foundation.

“When Governor Healey suggested people take migrants into their homes, nearly 79 percent of the voters disagreed with the Governor’s request. When the Governor continues to spend valuable taxpayer money on the right to shelter benefits for newly arrived migrants, a majority of the voters disagree with this decision. The big question that started last year and lingers into this year, without a source of sustainable funding going forward, 73 percent of voters do not think Massachusetts taxpayers can continue to sustain this current level of migration into the state,” noted Craney. 

“Other policy focused questions like a residency requirement for the right to shelter law were polled and 48 percent of the voters agreed with this requirement to take pressure off the Massachusetts emergency shelter system. This policy idea was the preference among Democratic voters and the majority of Republican and unenrolled voters. Perhaps State House leaders should reconsider this potential solution the next time Governor Healey requests more taxpayer money for this benefit. What is clear from this poll, the migrant crisis is at the forefront of voters’ minds and the solutions to date are not satisfactory” concluded Craney.

The poll viewed the opinions of 788 likely voters on both cell phones and landlines between February 3rd and February 6th. The poll has a margin of error of 3.6% at a 95% confidence level. The poll was sponsored by the Fiscal Alliance Foundation and conducted by Jim Eltringham of Advantage Inc., a polling company in the Washington D.C. area. A copy of the poll crosstabs and topline data may be found at the following links: