South Dakotans support an initiated measure that would the state raise minimum wage, according to a new poll released by Nielson Brothers Polling and Northern Plains News.

The poll also asked voters if they were going to vote for the Republican or Democrat in this state legislative district—with the Republicans winning, but by less than 6 percent. Over half of the minimum wage measure respondents—52.1 percent—said they supported Initiated Measure 18, which would increase the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 per hour to $8.50 per hour, tipped worker’s wages from $2.13 per hour to $4.25 per hour, and implement an annual cost of living increase.

Just over 28 percent (28.4 percent) said they would vote against it and 19.5 percent were unsure. Five hundred and two respondents answered the telephone touchpad poll conducted July 23-28, 2014. The margin of error is 4.37 percent.

The NBP poll asked: “Initiated Measure 18 makes three changes to the minimum wage: First, it raises the minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 per hour. Second, it raises the tip wage from $2.13 to 4.25 per hour. Third, the minimum wage and tip wage would rise with the cost of living. If you voted today would you vote for or against this initiative?”

“Minimum wage continues to receive support from a majority of South Dakota voters,” NBP partner Paul Nielson said. “Democrats (71.2 percent support) and independents/others (62.2 percent support) are especially supportive, while only 36 percent of Republicans say they will vote for it, with 21.8 percent of Republicans “undecided”).

The NBP/NPN poll also examined, in general terms, voters’ preferences for state senate races. Nearly 42 percent (41.9 percent) of respondents said they would vote for the generic Republican candidate, 36.7 percent for the Democratic candidate, and 21.4 percent were undecided.

NBP asked: If the election were held today, would you vote for the Republican or Democratic state senate candidate in your district?

With 528 responses the question has a 4.26 margin of error. While Democrats (70.4 percent for the Democratic candidate) and Republicans (72.9 percent for the Republican)

NPN graphic used with permission

support their own candidates almost equally, independent/others lean slightly toward the Democratic candidate (35.6 percent for the Democrat and 24.4 percent for the Republican candidate) with a high number (39.7 percent) of “undecided.”


Nearly two times as many Democrats (24.6 percent) as Republicans (14.3 percent) are “undecided.”

The schedule for the release of additional polling results from Nielson Brothers Polling and Northern Plains News:

• Friday: South Dakota politicians’ job performance.

• Saturday: Direction of state, impact of politicians taking positions on same sex marriage and immigration reform.