NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 31: A social distancing sign is seen during 2021 New Year's Eve celebration in Times Square on December 31, 2020 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)

As 2021 begins, 16% of voters nationwide believe the need for social distancing and wearing masks in public will continue at least for another year. At the other end of the spectrum, a Political IQ survey found that 16% believe either that it’s already time to end those pandemic protocols or will be in a couple of months.

Most voters (51%) hold views in between those extremes. They expect it will be safe to end social distancing in their area sometime between this spring and the winter of 2021.

The results don’t suggest dramatic partisan or demographic differences. For example, 15% of Democrats believe the need for social distancing will continue until at least 2022. That view is shared by 13% of Republicans and 19% of Independents.

Fifteen percent (15%) of White voters expect the need for pandemic measures will last at least another year. That view is shared by 16% of Black voters and 13% of Hispanic voters.


The online survey of 1,200 Registered Voters was conducted by Scott Rasmussen from December 26-27, 2020. Field work for the survey was conducted by RMG Research, Inc. Respondents were contacted online or via text. They were selected from a list of Registered Voters and through a process of Random Digital Engagement. Certain quotas were applied, and the sample was lightly weighted by geography, gender, age, race, education, and political party to reasonably reflect the nation’s population of Registered Voters. Other variables were reviewed to ensure that the final sample is representative of that population.

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