Recent study shows connection between political views and COVID-19 rates


A new study from the Western Rural Development Center (WRDC) based at Utah State University shows a connection between political views and COVID-19 per capita cases and death rates.

The article, “COVID-19 in Rural America: Impacts of Politics and Disadvantages,” shared information from the study showing that counties with high percentages of Donald Trump voters had higher per-capita cases of COVID-19.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had severe negative health and economic impacts throughout the country,” said Don Albrecht, executive director of the WRDC and author of the study. “After 18 months, we are still struggling. This article makes it clear that during a pandemic, political views have consequences.

“This past summer, failure to follow the advice of medical experts has resulted in a surge of people unnecessarily becoming ill, pushing hospitals and their staffs to their breaking point. Despite new medications that provide some relief for the severely ill, death still takes a daily toll in the United States.”

While political views were the most important variable explaining per capita COVID-19 cases, measures of disadvantage, such as low levels of education and high levels of poverty, were the best predictors of COVID-19 deaths.

“My goal in conducting this research was to better understand factors that explain where COVID-19 pandemic impacts were more and less severe,” Albrecht said. “I hope that recognition of the role of political views as well as the continued need to provide adequate medical care will help elected officials make appropriate policies and individuals make better choices.”

The WRDC focuses on science-based research and educational outreach capacity with communities, local decision-makers, entrepreneurs, families, farmers and ranchers to help address a wide range of development issues. While located at Utah State University, the WRDC works with partners to address the community and economic development concerns of the residents and communities in 13 western states.

The article was published in August 2021 in the academic journal, Rural Sociology. The study can be found here.

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  • Verlo September 15, 2021 at 9:53 am Reply

    So xiden won about 480 counties and Trump won about 2500 counties. Xiden’s wins of course were more heavily populated countries where transmission is more likely to occur. We’ve seen an example of this in New York last year. This article is just a cherry picked propaganda piece that is full of crap and another example of leftest medias attempt to spread misinformation.
    Meanwhile we have a total disaster going on in the white house, a president who can’t even speak a sentence without showing his dimentia, disaster at the southern border, Afghanistan disaster, out of control inflation, out of control gas prices, illegals spreading the virus and the leftists narritive is that Trump supporters are spreading the virus. Why don’t you guys cover the real story here?

    • Blayne September 15, 2021 at 3:46 pm Reply

      Totally agree. This article is weak – doesn’t explain why covid cases are up 300% over last year when zero Americans were vaccinated. Let’s do another “study” illustrating how Biden supporting communities are riddled with crime. And Trump supporting communities are generally safer and more desirable to live.

      Try again Shelby. Or yet, find another job.

    • Free Bird September 15, 2021 at 5:39 pm Reply

      Oh come on now. I heard Al and Will say that it was a conspiracy theory, there was no election fraud. What, you mean the pillow guy has documented evidence? Don’t look over at!

  • whoknows September 15, 2021 at 11:55 am Reply

    Thanks Verlo

  • Ttunac September 15, 2021 at 5:53 pm Reply

    Covid 19 and the vaccine have been political since the word go.
    Media piled on the former administration for lack of response and resources that have since been disputed.
    Almost all media outlets outspoken about the safety of the ‘Warp Speed Mandate’. Openly encouraged the population to be be sceptical and afraid.
    The current President and Vice President openly expressed concern about the vaccine in front of cameras.
    China finally admitted on January 11, 2020 that the virus was airborne.
    10 months later, the day after the election, Pfizer announced their vaccine.
    Since then everything has flipped. Celebrities/Media/politicians now all blame deaths on the hesitant and unvaxxed.
    Thanks USU. Way to stay in line and join the bandwagon. Courageous.
    I’d love to know the scientific methodology used in their research.
    Did they all bemoan the fact they were conservative on their death beds as they begged for the vaccine?

    • Ttunac September 15, 2021 at 6:46 pm Reply

      The president says the nation is 75% vaccinated, yet C19 cases have increased 300% nationwide.
      Polio vaccine took 28 years to develop.

  • Kramer September 15, 2021 at 6:36 pm Reply

    Stop contributing to the divide of our citizens. Why would you promote this bs propaganda study on your site. Guess today is the last time ill be visiting. Been real obvious what narrative this site has been trying to push recently….and its leaking onto the local radio waves when the “dj’s” share their opinions all too often…if you can even call them that

  • Joseph Smith September 15, 2021 at 10:17 pm Reply

    I don’t think a “recent study” was really needed on this one. Trump did a terrific job getting the (I mean this lovingly) not so smart, the gun nuts and the religious right to join the greedy super rich in this “ride or die” campaign. Their allegiance to this one person has made it so you’re either all the way for him and his positions or against. Very polarizing. It’s taking critical thinking out of the equation. Something that (again, with love) the not so smart and my religious friends have always had a tough time doing anyway. This website’s radio station doesn’t help matters – with the exception of For The People it’s all propaganda. And don’t get me started on Fox and CNN – it’s all opinion based garbage. I hope our younger generations somehow learn how to think and reason again. We have failed. Just monkeys throwing our own waste against the wall.

    • Ttunac September 16, 2021 at 1:57 pm Reply

      It has been reported >55% of African Americans haven’t been vaccinated. It’s also been reported minorities are disproportionately among those unvaxxed. These numbers don’t seem to jive with the “Trump = death” synopsis of this study.
      Also, at a recent rally, 60k+, Trump was resoundingly booed while instructing his ‘minions’ to get vaccinated.
      I don’t think vax hesitancy is as closely correlated to Trump approval as they want us to believe.

  • KarlFalconer September 16, 2021 at 10:16 am Reply

    Read the study. It’s a good example of adjusting the parameters and analysis until they fit. Look at the methodology, periods and factors they chose to analyze (Hint: “Trump” appears 35 time in the paper; “Biden” 0).

    • Ttunac September 16, 2021 at 3:24 pm Reply

      Yeah. Don Albrecht pushing his opinion under the guise of ‘science’. KVNU amplification results in passing credibility.
      To their defense, they’re just reading from a screen. Teleprompter…

  • Edgar September 16, 2021 at 2:27 pm Reply

    Covid was political when certain politicians said they would not get it if Trump approved it….. The minute he was gone, Biden took it andran with it… Now he is trying to force his will on the country. What he can remember anyway.

  • Sam October 1, 2021 at 5:56 am Reply

    USU is a failed institution that has been taken over by greed and woke-ism. I am ashamed to call it my Alma mater.

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