Taylor Swift and other celebrities should stay out of politics, according to a new poll released Wednesday by the Morning Consult and The Hollywood Reporter, suggesting that they should avoid mentioning President Donald Trump or support candidates.
The Grammy Award-winning Swift did just that this week, announcing to her sizable Instagram followers that she was officially endorsing U.S. Senate candidate Phil Bredesen and incumbent U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper, both Democrats, in their midterm races on Monday, according to Billboard magazine.
The chart-topping singer had declined to speak out publicly about her political views before, but her announcement created a significant social media buzz. Vote.org, a nonpartisan voter registration outfit, told Billboard that after Swift urged her social media followers to vote, they noticed a “massive spike in voter registration nationwide.”
But according to the new Morning Consult/The Hollywood Reporter poll, only 28 percent of respondents said that they wanted celebrities to use their public platform to speak out on political issues. Some 29 percent said that they should stay out of politics altogether.
The poll added that only 25 percent said that celebrities’ opinions would influence their midterm vote, but 36 percent of Generation Z voters said that the opinions of such stars had value to them.
The survey, though, was taken before Swift broke her silence and endorsed the Tennessee races, targeting Republican U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn for criticism, the Morning Consult stated. The conservative Blackburn, who has the support of President Donald Trump, is running for Senate against Bredesen, a former two-term governor in Tennessee.
“To have someone of her stature and with such a large microphone to step up and actually reinforce what we already know here is definitely going to boost the morale of people who have been told Tennesseans are divisive,” Mary Mancini, chair of the Tennessee Democratic Party, told BuzzFeed. “Having her come out and say this so publicly will make people sit up and say, ya know what, I’m not alone here.”
The poll, though, disagreed, finding that only 33 percent of Democrats and 18 percent of Republicans found celebrity political endorsements were influential to them. Only 19 percent of Baby Boomers found the celebrity political endorsement meaningful for them while 24 percent of Gen Xers said they were influential.
The poll did find that there were a handful of subjects respondents felt celebrities were effective speaking out on. Those include encouraging people to vote (71 percent), speaking out on sexual harassment (70 percent), and denouncing police brutality (60 percent).
Some 43 percent of the respondents said that it was inappropriate for stars to criticize Trump, but only 42 percent said it was appropriate to support him publicly.