When it comes to modifying New Jersey’s plastic bag ban, residents are fairly split.
That’s the major takeaway from a recent Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) Poll, which found 40% said the existing ban should remain as is. Smaller numbers called for it to be modified (26%) or overturned entirely (33%).
The FDU Poll found a partisan bent in the results, with Democrats largely wanting to keep the ban intact while most Republicans wanted to see it overturned.
Ban Still Debated
“When the ban passed last year, it was contentious, but politicians figured that people would get used to it,” said Dan Cassino, a professor of Government and Politics at FDU, and the director of the poll. “Nine months later, people are still arguing about it.”
The FDU Poll noted clear partisan divides, with Democrats the most likely to support keeping the ban as is with 50% of those surveyed.
Twenty-nine percent of Democrats surveyed noted they would support modifications to the ban. Only 20% of Democrats supported overturning the law. For Republicans, 55% said the bag ban should be overturned. Smaller numbers supported modifying it or overturning it.
“This is almost a perfect symbolic issue for partisans in New Jersey,” said Cassino. “Democrats can feel like they’re doing something for the environment; Republicans can feel like they’re suffering under governmental over-reach. Whether they like the ban or not, everyone is getting something they want out of it.”
Looking inside the numbers of the poll, the ban has the most support amongst the youngest and oldest age groups— 44% of those 30 and under support along with 42% of those older 65%.
Plastic Bag Ban History
As for gender, the respondents are within four points. For women, 39% said keep ban as is, 28% wanted it modified and 32% wanted it overturned. As for men, 40% said keep ban as is, 24% wanted it modified and 35% wanted it overturned.
New Jersey’s plastic bag ban went into effect in May 2022. The law banned large grocery stores from dispensing single-use shopping bags, with many arguing it was one of the strictest rules of its type in the nation.
The bill had widespread support ahead of its implementation, with a 2022 Monmouth University Poll finding 61% supporting the ban in general.
That said, modifications to the law began circulating in late 2022 to address increasing numbers of reusable bags entering into circulation. State Sen. Michael Testa (R-1) called for a complete overhaul of the ban in September 2022, arguing that the single-use plastic bags had been replaced with reusable bags imported from overseas.
“These imported carriers, specifically allowed by the current law, are all manufactured overseas, and they cannot be recycled in the U.S. This is what happens when legislation is rushed through and proponents refuse to listen to reason,” Testa noted at the time.
But State Sen. Bob Smith (D-17) who introduced the legislation, said in January that uproar from the reusable bag issue has dwindled.
“The bill has at least four different common sense solutions but there’s still requests … to get a little more experience in the market and then do the amendments,” Smith said. “My expectation is that this discussion will go on for another six months and then there’ll be a decision. Because at that point, you’ll have a year of experience with (the ban).”
of course 33% want it overturned! Those are there 33% who think the 2020 election was stolen….
A clear case of trumped rangement syndrome above by notatrumper above
A perfect example Of the level of intelligence and cognitive ability of your typical liberal or progressive
There is no legal or moral justification for a state government to ban bags
The function of a government is to protect the rights and property of its citizens not to tell people what to eat or what to carry the groceries in.
If supermarkets wanted to eliminate bags Or charge for them on their own they are perfectly free to do that. If people want to bring their own bags so they can “save the earth“ , they are perfectly free to do that too
There are 100 ways that the state of New Jersey could encourage a reduction in plastic use without using a sledgehammer and. BANNING them.
It’s another example of how intellectually limited the average law maker in New Jersey is and how little they understand how markets and businesses even work
Which law is worse bag ban or stopping for pedestrians? I don’t like either. I say that as a driver and a walker. Ban bags and and not even allowing using paper bags? Seems like stores are saving a lot of $$.
Such Poll’s must always be viewed as slanting to the Bias & favoring their Benefactor’s!! In today’s world this Ban is an Inconvenience & pose’s Hardship’s for’n some!! BUT; The major issue here was that No-one could come up with a suitable purpose & use for’n these used Plastic Bag’s.. WELL; My thought on this is, Recycled Plastics are useful in bonding with roadway paving!! Others can be used as a fuel source!!//