2024 Lyceum Poll - Press Release

For Immediate Release
May 22, 2024


Texas Lyceum Poll Shows Heightened Concern About Housing Costs, Other Economic Conditions

2024 Lyceum Poll Results
2024 Lyceum Poll Crosstabs

(AUSTIN, Texas, May 22, 2024) - 
Nearly half of Texans say their family economic situation has worsened over the past year, and a growing majority of state residents say they spend too much on housing, according to the 18th annual Texas Lyceum Poll.

The annual nonpartisan telephone poll of 1,200 Texans explores the most pressing issues facing the state, providing the public with specific data while tracking attitudes and opinions in Texas over time.

The poll points to significant economic anxiety, with 48% of poll respondents saying that their family’s economic situation has worsened compared to last year — an all-time high in Texas Lyceum polling going back to 2009, with the previous record set only last year in 2023. Additionally, 37% of Texans expect their children to be worse off economically compared to themselves, the highest share expressing a negative view of their children’s future since 2010 (41%). 

With the cost of housing near constant in recent news coverage, nearly two-thirds of Texans, 63%, say that they’re spending too much of their income on housing, an increase over the share who said the same in 2023 (55%), 2022 (50%), and 2020 (44%). A majority of homeowners (57%) and renters (73%), agreed that they spend too much of their income on housing.

"The scope of economic distress in Texas is both widespread and historically troubling," said Joshua Blank, PhD, research director of the Texas Lyceum poll. "While inflation has increased the cost of nearly everything, the steady increase in housing costs has clearly put a major strain on most Texas households."

As the 2024 election continues to unfold, the poll also found a continued decline in Texans' belief in the supremacy of democracy. Overall, only 37% of Texans “strongly agreed” that “Democracy is the best form of government,” with the share strongly agreeing declining slightly from 2023 (40%) and significantly since 2019 (53%).

"As we enter another election year in which democratic norms will be put to the test, the Lyceum poll finds Texans' views of democracy in a state of continued decay," said Joshua Blank. "As recently as 2019, nearly 60% of Texans said they were at least somewhat satisfied with the way democracy is working in the U.S., the last two Lyceum polls found majority dissatisfaction."

The Texas Lyceum Poll also surveyed Texans’ opinions on the following issues:


  • Federal Elections: Republican Former President Donald Trump continues to lead Democratic President Joe Biden by a margin of 41% to 31%, while Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz also leads his Democratic Challenger, U.S. Rep. Colin Allred, 41% to 31% (among registered voters, n=926, MOE +/-3.22%).
  • Legalized Marijuana: Overall, 60% of Texas adults say that they support legalizing the use of marijuana in Texas, a 14 point increase since the question was last asked in 2015, when a majority of voters (50%) expressed opposition.

  • Casino Gambling: Asked about expanding legal casino gambling in Texas, 57% of Texans said they would be supportive of expanded casino gambling, while 28% said they would be opposed.

  • Mental Health: 39% of Texans say that mental health issues in children and teenagers are a crisis in their community, with 42% saying that they're a problem. At the same time, a majority of Texans say that they're worried that someone in their family will experience a serious mental health crisis. More than a quarter of Texans, 27%, described their own mental health and emotional well-being as only “fair” (18%) or “poor” (9%).

  • Water: One in three Texans (33%) said that they had experienced a boil water notice or notification about the safety of their tap water in the last year, with majorities expressing concern about both the reliability and safety of the water supply in their community.

  • Space: A majority of Texas adults, 51%, said that they were "probably not interested" (21%) or "definitely not interested" (31%) in orbiting the earth in a private spacecraft, though 50% of Texans expect people to be routinely traveling into space in tourists in the next 50 years.

Each year, The Texas Lyceum holds conferences delving into the major issues facing Texas, with this year’s series of events including deep dives into water policy (February), Texas’ leadership in space (April), the state of mental health in Texas (September), and the future of marijuana and gambling in the state (November) — among others. The Lyceum Poll is designed to provide context for 2024 Texas Lyceum meetings and conferences by bringing in the perspectives of everyday Texans, while also providing policy makers, the press and the public with scientifically collected information to inform future policy discussions.

“The Texas Lyceum Poll offers a clear view of opinions on major policy issues that are on the minds of Texans, many of which we are discussing at our conferences throughout 2024,” said Texas Lyceum President Molly Quirk. “These findings will further influence the conversations Lyceum is leading across Texas this year. Our annual poll aims to help our fellow Texans better understand each other’s views with an eye toward working together on solutions that will make our great state even stronger.”

The poll was conducted April 12-21. The overall margin of error for the poll is +/- 2.83 percentage points, with a larger margin of error for sub-samples.


About the Texas Lyceum
The Texas Lyceum is the only nonprofit, nonpartisan, stateside leadership organization focused on identifying the state’s next generation of leaders and providing a forum for civil discourse. The Texas Lyceum hosts meetings and conferences, publishes a nationally acclaimed annual poll, and offers scholarship and fellowship programs all focused on bringing together diverse opinions and expertise to emphasize constructive private-sector, public-sector and individual responses to the issues facing the state and the nation.





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