© 2021 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.Tourism and politics are symbiotic. This research, conducted before the impacts of COVID-19 were evident to most Americans, provides insight into the influence one’s political persuasion has upon their view toward travel issues related to the disease. The key finding: political tribalism was highly evident, with Republicans, the more conservative USA political party, significantly more supportive of closing the country’s borders to those visiting from places where the virus was apparent than were Democratic respondents. Republicans were also considerably less supportive of governmental financial support to hospitality and tourism providers negatively impacted by the then evolving pandemic. Documenting this early glimpse is valuable, helping us better prepare for similar episodes that may follow by depoliticizing actions that are based on health science.