As oil from BP’s Deepwater Horizon well makes its way deep into the marshes of the Gulf Coast, and the wildlife toll mounts, the company announced today that cleanup costs have already reached $1.25 billion and are growing quickly. Given this devastation, it’s not surprising that a vast majority of Americans “” 72 percent “” now have a negative view of the company, a new Rasmussen poll found. However, 22 percent still have a somewhat or very favorable view of the foreign oil giant.
EnviroKnow examined the crosstabs from the poll and found that this group of BP supporters is made up disproportionately of conservatives. Guest blogger William Tomasko has the story in this TP repost.
On BP favorability, a few key statistics stick out:
* Conservatives are four times more likely to view BP favorably as Liberals are
* Republicans are more than twice as likely to view BP favorably as Democrats are
* Whites are nearly twice as likely to view BP favorably as Blacks are
Given conservatives’ almost religious devotion to offshore drilling, perhaps this is not surprising. While a majority of Americans now believe increased offshore drilling is “too risky,” several Republican leaders have called for an immediate expansion of drilling, even before the investigation of the Deepwater Horizon disaster is complete. Meanwhile, evidence mounts that BP flouted safety regulations before the disaster, and there are legitimate questions about the sincerity of BP’s pledge to pay for all damages from the spill. A recent Washington Post-ABC News poll, 64 percent of Americans would support a federal decision to pursue criminal charges against the company.