Business backers of a new Vikings stadium were taking public pains Monday to temper their rhetoric as they called for legislators to disentangle the stalled stadium bill from other issues and bring it to a vote.
But the March 16-19 statewide poll sponsored by the business-backed Home Field Advantage coalition gives pro-stadium lobbyists a more pointed persuasive tool, should they care to use it.
"If the Vikings were to leave Minnesota because a new stadium was not authorized, who would you feel is most responsible?" the poll asked. Nearly half of the 715 respondents answered, "the Legislature." Only 10 percent would point their fingers of blame at Gov. Mark Dayton. Three out of 10 said they would fault the Vikings; a mere 5 percent would target the city of Minneapolis.
Those aren't mild views, the poll found. Ninety-five percent of respondents said their position was held either "very strongly" or "somewhat strongly." Those findings ought to get the attention of election-minded legislators.
Already released poll results from a larger sample, 1,000 respondents, found that more than three of five Minnesotans support the stadium financing package crafted by the Vikings, Dayton, Minneapolis officials and the bill's legislative sponsors. The poll also found more than seven in 10 respondents saying that keeping the Vikings in Minnesota is either very or somewhat important to them. Those results carry a margin of error of 3.2 percent.