Even among those who say, “The less government the better,” 31 percent feel the nation needs a strong government to handle those complex problems.
Americans don’t feel terribly optimistic about their own economic opportunities. Although 49 percent say their standard of living surpasses that of their parents, most are broadly pessimistic about the opportunity to achieve the American Dream. And they are mixed on whether people like them have a good chance to improve their standard of living.
Few are hopeful that the pieces are in place for the government to improve. About half are pessimistic about the country’s ability to produce strong leaders generally. And 61 percent are pessimistic about the system of government overall and the way leaders are chosen.
The AP-NORC Center poll was conducted online Dec. 12 to 16 among a random national sample of 1,141 adults. The survey has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points for all respondents.
The survey was conducted by GfK using KnowledgePanel, a probability-based Internet panel designed to be representative of the U.S. population. Respondents to the survey were first selected randomly, using phone or mail survey methods, and were later interviewed online. People selected for KnowledgePanel who didn’t otherwise have access to the Internet were provided with the ability to access the Internet at no cost to themselves.
AP News Survey Specialist Dennis Junius contributed to this report.