Every four years, Utah Foundation conducts a series of surveys to discover which topics are most important to Utah voters. Surveying priorities in 2020 proved to be a unique challenge. Our first series of surveys finished in March. Days later, the coronavirus pandemic shut down state economies and the next few months saw widespread protests against racism and for police reform. Due to the reshuffling of Utah voters’ priorities, Utah Foundation conducted another round of surveys to see how priorities changed from late winter to early summer.

Below you can find two main reports outlining the major research on the priorities that are the most important to Utahns. The column in the middle features short briefs on the most important priorities, covering current trends and more detailed questions. The right column features other resources related to the Utah Priorities Project.

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Reports

What’s on Utah’s Mind: Voter Issues and Concerns in 2020

What’s on Utah’s Mind: Voter Issues and Concerns in 2020 – the first release in the 2020 Utah Priorities Project series – outlines voters’ top concerns. The project uses surveys to inform candidates for elected office, elected officials, civic leaders and others on voters’ priorities. It draws from a survey taken before the coronavirus pandemic hit Utah and from a second one taken this summer.

Health care (costs and accessibility) remains the top issue from the 2016 Utah Priorities Project. Unsurprisingly, the coronavirus is tightly linked to each of the top five issues.

Red, Gray and Blue: The Issues that Unite and Divide Utah Voters

During every gubernatorial election year, Utah Foundation surveys Utah voters to understand their priorities and releases a series of reports as the Utah Priorities Project. The summer 2020 priority list for Utahns overall can be found in the first report of the 2020 series. This report, Red, Gray and Blue: The Issues that Unite and Divide Utah Voters, looks at how priorities are different across party and ideological lines. The report highlights both similarities and dissimilarities between the groups.

Briefs

  1. Utah Priority No. 1: Health Care (Costs and Accessibility)
  2. Utah Priority No. 2: State Taxes and Spending
  3. Utah Priority No. 3: Kindergarten through 12th Grade
  4. Utah Priority No. 4: Jobs and the Economy
  5. Utah Priority No. 5: Public Health / COVID-19 Pandemic
  6. Utah Priority No. 6: Politicians Listening to Voters
  7. Utah Priority No. 7: Housing Affordability
  8. Utah Priority No. 8: Managing Growth
  9. Utah Priority No. 9: Police (Support or Reform)
  10. Utah Priority No. 10: Partisanship and Division
  11. Utah Priority No. 11: Air Quality in the State
  12. Utah Priority No. 12: Crime