January 31, 2003

Confidence in Country’s Course at Lowest Ebb Since Bush Took Office

Summary of Findings

Confidence in the state of the nation took a dramatic plunge over the course of January. A national survey of 1,000 Americans conducted Jan. 22-29 finds just 34% of the public satisfied and 58% dissatisfied with the way things are going in the country. The survey, largely completed before President Bush’s Jan. 28 State of the Union address, showed a sharp decline from the Pew Research Center survey in early January (44% satisfied/50% dissatisfied).

Declining confidence in late January was most apparent among Republicans — especially moderate Republicans — and independents. Satisfaction with state of the nation among Democrats and liberals slid the least, as it was already at very low level by early January (see attached for details).