AARP AARP States Montana Voters

AARP Poll: Findings Show Montana 50-Plus Voters United in Concern Over Jobs, the Economy and Health Care

Word Press Picture
House Candidates in Statistical Tie Among Montana 50-Plus Voters

Helena, Mont., Sept. 28, 2018 —Today, AARP announced voters age 50 and over are united in their concern over Jobs, the economy and health care, according to a newly released AARP poll. The poll also found, financial security -- health care costs, Social Security, retirement, cost of living – are keeping Montanans up at night, followed by partisanship concerns, immigration, and global issues. When asked directly, partisanship and division in the national discourse are the top concerns. Additionally, the poll found that 91 percent were very likely to vote in the general election this fall.

The survey is part of AARP’s “Be The Difference. Vote™” campaign and continues AARP’s long tradition of nonpartisan voter engagement.

“With less than 50 days to go before Election Day, candidates in Montana should listen to the state’s most active voting group: 50-plus voters,” said Tim Summers, AARP Montana State Director. “History shows older voters turn out in force and AARP is seeking to ensure issues of particular importance to older voters are front and center – issue like Medicare, Social Security, prescription drug costs, and family caregiving.”

Jobs, the economy and health care are top-of-mind among Montana’s 50+ voters – far out-pacing concerns about the environment, taxes and education. Even among voters 65+, jobs and the economy are top responses.

The poll findings also point to close races for Montana’s Senate and House of Representative races. Of the 950 people polled, 50 percent said they would vote for Jon Tester (D) if the election were held today while 43 percent said they would vote for Matt Rosendale (R). Only five percent of older voters are undecided.

The candidates for Montana’s lone congressional seat are in a statistical tie among Montana voters age 50 and over. Greg Gianforte (R) was supported by 46 percent of those polled while Kathleen Williams (D) was favored by 45 percent. Seven percent of older voters remain undecided.

On the Ballot Initiative front, likely voters were asked whether they supported I-185 – the initiative that raises taxes on tobacco products with part of the revenue directed towards health-related programs. Of those surveyed, 56 percent indicated they would vote “yes” on I-185 and 36 percent said they would vote “no” with 6 percent remaining undecided.

The Montana poll found:

  • Jobs, the economy and health care are top-of-mind among Montana’s 50+ voters – far out-pacing concerns about the environment, taxes and education. Even among voters 65+, jobs and the economy are top responses.
  • Just 1-in-3 are very confident they will have enough money to live comfortably in retirement, with near-retirees the most concerned. One-in-three 50-64 year olds are not confident about their financial security for their retirement, and just fewer than 1 in 4 are very confident.
  • On an open-ended basis, financial security -- health care costs, Social Security, retirement, cost of living – are keeping Montanans up at night, followed by partisanship concerns, immigration, and global issues. When asked directly, partisanship and division in the national discourse are the top concerns.
  • Lead by a desire to strengthen Social Security and Medicare so they protect society’s most vulnerable and prevent prescription drug companies from charging sky-high prices; across AARP’s key issues, 50+ voters in Montana, both Democrat and Republican, are on the same page as AARP.
  • Montana’s 50+ voters think it’s high time the government did something to bring down out-of-control drug costs.
  • Remarkably, in an era of hyper partisanship, support for letting Medicare negotiate directly with drug companies gets nearly unanimous support among Montana’s 50+ voters– with especially strong support from Republicans.
  • Seven-in-ten of all 50+ voters in the state also want make it possible to buy prescriptions  from abroad, limit the profits pharmaceutical companies are allowed to make, and close loopholes that let pharmaceuticals charge prices sky-high.
  • Social Security is one of the most important issues to 50+ voters. They want to see immediate action to shore it up, but they want to do so in a way that expands benefits to the most vulnerable and they are on guard against Congressional reforms that would harm seniors.
  • In terms of Medicare, Premium Support is very unpopular among Montana’s 50+ voters – even among Republicans.
  • Medicaid is popular among Montana’s 50+ voters. A strong majority of voters across party lines are favorable to the program.

For more information on AARP’s "Be The Difference. Vote," campaign and to pledge to vote in this year’s elections, go to www.aarp.org/vote.

The poll, conducted by Benenson Strategy Group, surveyed 950 likely voters in Montana 50 and older between September 6 – 16, 2018 and has a margin of error of +/- 3.10 percentage points. View full survey results at www.aarp.org/MT.

AARP does not endorse candidates or make contributions to political parties, political campaigns or candidates.

To see the issues: AARP - Montana 2018 Voter Issues Report 9.27.2018 FIN

About AARP:

AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering Americans 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With nearly 38 million members and offices in every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, AARP works to strengthen communities and advocate for what matters most to families with a focus on health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also works for individuals in the marketplace by sparking new solutions and allowing carefully chosen, high-quality products and services to carry the AARP name.  As a trusted source for news and information, AARP produces the world’s largest circulation publications, AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org or follow @AARP and @AARPadvocates on social media.

About AARP Montana:

For over 40 years, AARP has been working right here in big sky country to improve the lives of the 50 plus. By fighting on issues that matter most to Montana families and providing trusted information, we’re helping Montanans live life to the fullest. Today, nearly 150,000 strong, AARP Montana is the largest membership organization in the state.  As a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political action committees, campaigns or candidates.

About AARP Montana
Contact information and more from your state office. Learn what we are doing to champion social change and help you live your best life.