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Polling expert breaks down attitudes to Covid-19 pandemic into five groups

A polling expect has broken down attitudes to the Covid-19 pandemic into five categories based on how each group feels about masks, restrictions, and vaccines. 

Statistician Nate Silver posted his findings on Twitter and calculated what proportion of the US population fell into each camp.

The 43-year-old is the most prominent polling analyst in the US and specialises in predicting baseball, basketball, and elections. 

‘If you look at public opinion on Covid-related restrictions right now, it probably breaks down into these five groups,’ he tweeted to his 3.5 million followers. 

The groupings take into account attitudes on Covid-19 restrictions, vaccines and masks

People who fall into Group C can be divided further into Group C1 (10 per cent) and Group C2 (five per cent)

People who fall into Group C can be divided further into Group C1 (10 per cent) and Group C2 (five per cent)

Poll

Which group do you fall under?

  • Group A 0 votes
  • Group B 0 votes
  • Group C 0 votes
  • Group D 0 votes
  • Group E 0 votes

Silver’s analysis was based on attitudes in August, when Australia still had a long way to go in its vaccine rollout but the US was almost done, but the groups were held to be applicable to every country even if the percentages varied.

The first of the five groups is Group A, which the analyst estimates accounts for 25 per cent of the American electorate. 

He said people who fall into Group A are vaccinated but not ready for a ‘return to normal’ and believe society has opened up too fast. 

Group A are fearful of the Delta variant and are in favour of ‘any or all’ restrictions including snap lockdowns and remote learning. 

The second category is Group B which accounts for 30 per cent of the electorate. 

This group is also vaccinated, somewhat worried about Delta and would prefer moderate restrictions like wearing masks indoors, especially if the rule targets unvaccinated residents. 

The polling expert has based his calculations on the United States where people have been more hesitant to get vaccinated than in Australia (pictured, a Sydney hair salon)

The polling expert has based his calculations on the United States where people have been more hesitant to get vaccinated than in Australia (pictured, a Sydney hair salon)

Nate Silver (pictured) is considered the most prominent polling analyst in America and has categorised attitudes to the Covid-19 pandemic into five main groups

Nate Silver (pictured) is considered the most prominent polling analyst in America and has categorised attitudes to the Covid-19 pandemic into five main groups

At the same time, people who fall under Group B don’t want a return to lockdowns but have the potential to drift to Group A if cases began to rise. 

Group C accounts for 15 per cent of the electorate and is a mix of younger Americans who don’t vote consistently and ‘centre-right libertarian types’. 

This group is vaccinated but ‘over the pandemic’ and wary of restrictions. 

People who fall into Group C can be divided further into Group C1 (10 per cent) and Group C2 (five per cent). 

C1 aren’t keen on restrictions on themselves – for example masks – but could support vaccine mandates, especially if their friends and family are vaccinated. 

C2 are the strong libertarian types who oppose any restrictions on a philosophical basis, Silver explains. 

Group D, about 25 per cent of the population, are unvaccinated and strongly opposed to any restrictions. 

This group is mostly made up of Republicans and some apathetic younger voters, the polling analyst estimates.  

Group E, five per cent of Americans, are also unvaccinated but are in favour of other restrictions necessary to protect themselves from contracting Covid-19.   

The analyst's findings were made in August and are based on the US population, where people have been a lot more hesitant to get vaccinated (pictured, bar-goers in Sydney)

The analyst’s findings were made in August and are based on the US population, where people have been a lot more hesitant to get vaccinated (pictured, bar-goers in Sydney)

This group is made up of mostly Democrats and the working class.

The polling expert said if you persuade people in Group D to get vaccinated they’ll move to group C1 or C2. 

If people from Group E can be convinced to get the jab he estimates they’ll mostly move to Group A. 

Silver further explained that 50 to 70 per cent of the electorate would be in favour of vaccine mandates from Groups A and B and some from Group C.  

The analyst’s findings were made in August and are based on the US population, where people have been a lot more hesitant to get vaccinated than Australia. 

Just 69 per cent of Americans aged 12 and over are vaccinated and about 79 per cent have had at least one dose.

The analyst estimated 25 per cent of the American electorate are unvaccinated and strongly opposed to any restrictions (pictured, people exercise at Coogee Beach)

The analyst estimated 25 per cent of the American electorate are unvaccinated and strongly opposed to any restrictions (pictured, people exercise at Coogee Beach)

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