The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Poll: 7 in 10 Voters Support Increased Domestic Energy Access

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted August 14, 2012

American voters get the importance of energy – and getting more of it here at home. A new Harris Interactive survey of 1,016 registered voters shows that more than 70 percent support increased access to domestic oil and natural gas resources. More than 9 in 10 of those surveyed said producing more energy at home and energy security are important issues as they look to the November elections.

Harris found 47 percent of those asked said they strongly support increased access to oil and gas resources at home. Another 24 percent said they somewhat support more access. Just 9 percent strongly oppose that as a goal. Eighty-five percent of Republicans, 72 percent of Independents and 60 percent of Democrats support increased access to domestic resources.

API President and CEO Jack Gerard:

“Voters get it…We started this year talking about the need for pro-energy policies, and we have been talking to voters through the Vote 4 Energy campaign to encourage a discussion about energy and to encourage voters to make energy a ballot box decision in November. Our poll shows voters get it. To make sure our elected officials get it, we’re taking our campaign to where they’re listening.”

On the energy-as-an-election-issue question, Harris found support fairly consistent across party lines:  98 percent of Republicans, 88 percent of Democrats and 87 percent of Independents in the survey said energy is either very important or somewhat important as an election issue.

Other key results:

  • 90 percent agree increased access to domestic energy could lead to more American jobs.
  • 87 percent agree that accessing more domestic oil and natural gas could help lower energy costs for consumers.
  • 65 percent agree that increasing taxes on energy companies could drive up energy costs.
  • 73 percent support changing policies to allow more offshore energy development.
  • 63 percent say Washington is on the wrong track regarding U.S. energy policy.
  • 75 percent support development of the Keystone XL pipeline.

More detail on the Keystone XL result: 57 percent strongly support the project and 17 percent somewhat support it. Just 12 percent strongly oppose the pipeline’s construction. By political affiliation, 89 percent of Republicans, 69 percent of Independents and 66 percent of Democrats support the Keystone XL project.


Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.