Communications & Messaging

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Preemption is a dry legislative tool with dangerous consequences for our democracy.  Translating those effects on local communities and residents into everyday language is key to successful education and alliance-building efforts.  To that end, LSSC has invested in qualitative and quantitative research, developed messaging guides and other communications tools designed to help elected officials, policymakers, advocates and allies explain the concept and consequences of state interference to the public and media.

Polling and Focus Group Research

National public opinion research 

In November 2019, a statewide survey revealed that Florida voters have a more favorable opinion of local governments, such as City Councils or County Commissions, than they do of the Florida State Legislature and believe local governments are better connected to the community than state government. Accordingly, regardless of partisanship, voters with an opinion on the issue oppose state preemption by a 3:1 margin, and voters believe preemption has a more negative than positive impact on them personally. Read the key takeaways and the full results of the survey.

In August 2019, LSSC released the findings from in-person and online focus groups to hone messaging on preemption and the concept of home rule conducted the research firm PerryUndem. Download here.

In August 2019, PerryUndem Research conducted a webinar detailing their findings and its implicates: Here is a link to the recording of that webinar.

In January 2019, LSSC released the results of In-Depth-Interviews with conservative state lawmakers and staff about local control and state preemption in nine states.  The interviews were conducted by Moore Information. Download here.

In January 2018, LSSC released the results of a national poll on preemption conducted by Anzalone, Liszt, Grove Research. Download here.


State polls

Texas – released in February 2019 by the Texas Center for Public Policy Priorities. Download here.

Florida - released in March 2019. Download here.

Missouri -  released in July 2018. Download here.

Minnesota – released in August 2018. Download here.


Messaging Guides and Toolkits 

In September 2019, LSSC released a messaging guide based on past and new national and state surveys, in-person and online focus groups and online digital ad testing.

LSSC also developed messaging about home rule and reasons to update the principles and laws that determine the rights and powers of local government.

In 2018, LSSC released this messaging guide and toolkit


Digital Ads

LSSC has partnered with The Campaign Workshop to create a message-tested digital advertising toolkit to provide local partners with messaging insight and creative options that can move the preemption conversation forward and build real understanding of the issues at a grassroots level. View and download here.

Ads from The Campaign Workshop toolkit:

LSSC provided grants for two digital ad campaigns in fall 2018 based on the polling in Minnesota and Missouri designed to educate the public about their legislature and state interference. The state poll results are reflected in this digital ad prepared by the Campaign Workshop for the coalition led by TakeAction Minnesota (TAMN) and this ad prepared by Missouri Jobs with Justice.



Download Frequently Asked Questions here.

Ally Resources

The American Heart Association a national LSSC partner and participant in several state cross-issue coalitions, has produced a preemption toolkit.