Rural Battleground Poll

Our unique poll captured the persuadable nature of rural voters across the country. Learn more about ways to effectively engage these audiences.


Rural voters are persuadable

Understanding Rural Attitudes

1,713 likely rural and small-town voters surveyed on a diversity of topics, with oversamples of Black, Latino/a, and Native American voters.

Created by:
RDI and Breakthrough Campaigns

May 2024

Make the Case for Rural Investment

Share the poll with funders to show the need to fund rural engagement programs.

Rural voters are very persuadable in this election: 15% of rural battleground voters are undecided in the Presidential race – far more than enough to swing the election. 28% of rural BIPOC voters are undecided. 24% of 18-29 year-old rural voters are undecided.

Rural voters report they hear much more from conservatives than progressives.

As you build your work plans, keep in mind the key findings about rural voters’ essential attitudes and top priorities. For the most effective messaging, consider engaging veterans, local law enforcement, farmers, and small business owners. Along with family and friends, these messengers rank among the most trusted for rural voters.

Lift up your Policy Priorities

The poll shows rural voters support the same top policy priorities as our grantees — in particular, rural voters are economic populists.

  • 57% of rural battleground voters agree with President Biden: “We should grow our economy by getting more money in the pockets of working people, not corporations.”
  • 76% would be more favorable to a leader who supports “requiring rich people and corporations to pay their fair share of taxes to invest in tools and opportunities for working people.”
  • 86% support banning junk fees.

Abortion Policy

Personal Freedom is Paramount

Rural and small-town people overwhelmingly believe in personal freedom from government interference. 74% believe abortion is a decision best left to women and their doctors, not politicians.

Agricultural Policy

Invest in Working Families, Not Giant Corporations

  • 88% support cracking down on meat processing monopolies and ensuring local businesses can compete
  • 87% support expanding broadband internet access to all communities in the United States. 87% believe in protecting our air, water, and natural resources from corporate and agricultural polluters and runoff
  • 62% agree that our government should invest more in clean energy, like wind and solar, to lower costs, support American energy independence, and create quality jobs that can’t be outsourced.

Housing Policy

Shared Concerns across Geography

Like our counterparts in urban and suburban places, rural people are concerned with rising housing costs.


Show the Real Rural

The poll is an opportunity to show who actually lives in our communities and what we care about. Make the case to reporters for the inclusion of small-town and rural communities in conversations about the most important issues facing the country. From the New York Times to rural radio, RDI uses the poll as an advocacy tool and a way to attract media coverage.

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