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Support varies by geographic area. Democrats and young voters support. Republicans split on the issue.

LANSING, Mich. – Fifty-one percent of Michigan voters believe the state should use $350 million dollars of tobacco settlement money to help the City of Detroit meet its pension contract agreements to prevent the city from having to sell any of its Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) paintings and artwork collection, according to the latest statewide survey conducted by Marketing Resource Group (MRG) of Lansing.

While there is support throughout the state for the plan, the strongest support came from the City of Detroit (69 percent support), Oakland County (65 percent support), and the balance of Wayne County outside of Detroit (64 percent support).

Mid-Michigan (39 percent support, 45 percent oppose) and West Michigan (42 percent support, 43 percent oppose) are relatively split on the issue while the Upper Peninsula (58 percent), North Lower Michigan (51 percent), and Tri-Cities and thumb area (47 percent) oppose the idea.

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“The poll shows that the financial solvency of the City of Detroit is not just a Detroit issue,” said Tom Shields, president of MRG. “There is strong regional support in the Detroit Metropolitan area that crosses partisan lines.”

The results also revealed that Democrats overwhelmingly support the proposed financial assistance for the City of Detroit, Independents slightly support it and Republicans are split on the issue.

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Voters between the ages of 18 and 34-years old showed the strongest support, with 80 percent in favor of the plan. More than 47 percent of voters between the ages of 35 and 54-years old support the idea while voters 55-years and older are split on the issue (43 percent support, 43 percent oppose).

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The actual wording of the question and the results are below:

Would you support or oppose the State of Michigan using $350 million dollars of tobacco settlement money over the next 20 years to help the City of Detroit meet its pension contract agreements and prevent the city from having to sell any of its Detroit Institute of Arts paintings and artwork collection?

Strongly support: 32.8%
Somewhat support: 18.2%
Somewhat oppose: 11.3%
Strongly oppose: 25.7%
Don’t know: 11.5%
Refused: 0.5%

TOTAL SUPPORT: 51.0%
TOTAL OPPOSE: 37.2%

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Marketing Resource Group’s Spring 2014 MRG Michigan Poll was conducted March 24 through March 28. The poll was conducted by live professionally trained telephone interviewers. The random sample, consisting of 600 likely voters who indicated that they will be voting in the November general election, has a margin of error of ±4 percentage points or less within a 95 percent degree of confidence.

The cluster sample was drawn from a list of voters likely to vote in the November general elections, which is determined by their participation in previous statewide general elections. The individuals included in that list and their voting histories are updated monthly. The poll sample is stratified by statewide voter turnout and is geographically representative of general election voter turnout in Michigan. Twenty percent of the respondents are likely voters who live in cell phone-only households. Those respondents were manually dialed, contacted and interviewed on their cell-phones and they indicated that they do not have a land line telephone in their homes.

About Marketing Resource Group, Inc.
Lansing, Michigan-based Marketing Resource Group, Inc. is an award-winning PR firm representing corporate, association, nonprofit, and private clients with interests in Michigan. MRG offers expertise in public affairs, communications, political campaign management, and public opinion survey research. For more than thirty years, MRG has conducted its bi-annual omnibus Michigan Poll™, tracking the pulse of Michigan voters on key statewide public policy and political issues. MRG is the only Michigan public opinion survey research firm that maintains nearly 30 years of trend analyses of voter attitudes related to state and national leaders, political parties, and the political and economic climate in Michigan.

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