In February 2011, just after Gov. Scott Walker "dropped the bomb" by proposing to curtail the collective bargaining rights of most public workers, a Gallup Poll found that 61% of 1,000 Americans sampled opposed Walker's plan while 33% were supportive.
One month later, a survey by Quinnipiac University found that 45% of respondents would support curbing collective bargaining rights to save governments money while 42% would oppose it.
More recently, and among Wisconsin voters only, a May poll by Marquette Law School found that "collective bargaining continues to divide the [Wisconsin] electorate by single digits." Its May telephone survey of 700 registered state voters found that 50% would like to keep things as they are, while 43% would prefer to return to previous law.
Restoring collective bargaining was supported by 78% of Democrats but opposed by 81% of Republicans. And as far as that elusive independent vote, collective bargaining did not appear to be a winning issue: 53% preferred current law, while 38% wanted the restoration of bargaining rights for public workers.