Appendix A: Measures and scales
Thermometer ratings The survey measured ratings toward a number of groups and people in the U.S. on a “feeling thermometer” ranging from zero (“as cold and negative as possible”) to 100 (“as warm and positive as possible”), with 50 as the neutral point. See topline for full question wording. Throughout this report, ratings on the […]
Survey conducted March 2-28, 2016 and April 5-May 2, 2016 The American Trends Panel (ATP), created by the Pew Research Center, is a nationally representative panel of randomly selected U.S. adults living in households. Respondents who self-identify as internet users and who provided an email address participate in the panel via monthly self-administered Web surveys, […]
7. Partisan views of 2016 candidates, Barack and Michelle Obama, views of the election
Republicans and Democrats feel much more negatively toward the other’s party’s presumptive presidential nominees than they do toward members of the opposing party. (The surveys were conducted from early March through early May, before Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump effectively secured their party’s nominations.) Republicans’ views of Clinton – and Democrats’ views of Trump – […]
6. How do the political parties make you feel?
Republicans and Democrats have strong negative reactions to the opposing party. Feelings of frustration are most common – 58% of Democrats and 57% of Republicans feel frustrated by the other party. But large shares also react with fear and anger toward the other party. A majority of Democrats (55%) say the GOP makes them feel […]
5. Views of parties’ positions on issues, ideologies
Republicans and Democrats see little common ground between the two parties when it comes to issues, ideas and ideology. Majorities of partisans say the policy positions of the Republican and Democratic parties are very different, and neither Republicans nor Democrats say the other party has many good ideas. In general terms, both Republicans and Democrats […]
4. Partisan stereotypes, views of Republicans and Democrats as neighbors
Many Republicans and Democrats associate negative characteristics with members of the other party – and positive traits with their own. But the specific criticisms Democrats and Republicans have of each other vary. And on several of these traits, a majority of partisans say Republicans and Democrats aren’t much different from the public as a whole. […]
3. Partisan environments, views of political conversations and disagreements
For the most part, people have politically mixed friend groups, although both Republicans and Democrats are more likely to say they have a lot of friends from their own party than from the opposing party. The partisan diversity of people’s friend networks is linked to how people feel about the members of the other party, […]
2. The roots of partisanship
Why do people choose to identify as a Republican or a Democrat? For Republicans, about as many (68%) cite as a major reason the harm that Democratic policies inflict on the country as cite the beneficial impact of GOP policies (64%). The balance of views among Democrats is only slightly more positive: 68% say a […]
1. Feelings about partisans and the parties
Partisans’ dislike of the opposing party is part and parcel of American politics, but recent years have witnessed a growing intensity in these feelings. For the first time in more than two decades of Pew Research Center surveys, majorities of partisans have not only an unfavorable view of the other party, but a very unfavorable […]
Partisanship and Political Animosity in 2016
The 2016 campaign is unfolding against a backdrop of intense partisan division and animosity. Partisans’ views of the opposing party are now more negative than at any point in nearly a quarter of a century.
A Wider Ideological Gap Between More and Less Educated Adults
Two years ago, Pew Research Center found that Republicans and Democrats were more divided along ideological lines than at any point in the previous two decades. But growing ideological distance is not confined to partisanship. There are also growing ideological divisions along educational and generational lines.
The Politics of Financial Insecurity
While the least financially secure Americans are more likely to back Democrats, that support is undercut by low political participation. Those who are financially insecure are far more likely to opt out of the political system altogether.
Teaching the Children: Sharp Ideological Differences, Some Common Ground
People with consistently conservative political values are particularly likely to say it is important to teach children religious faith, while those with consistently liberal values stand out for the priority they give to teaching tolerance.
Beyond Red vs. Blue: The Political Typology
Our latest political typology sorts voters into cohesive groups based on their attitudes and values and provides a field guide for the constantly changing political landscape.
Political Polarization in the American Public
Republicans and Democrats are more divided along ideological lines – and partisan acrimony is deeper and more extensive – than at any point in recent history. And these trends manifest themselves in myriad ways, both in politics and in everyday life.
Deficit Reduction Declines as Policy Priority
Survey Report For the first time since Barack Obama took office in 2009, deficit reduction has slipped as a policy priority among the public. Overall, 63% say reducing the budget deficit should be a top priority for Congress and the president this year, down from 72% a year ago. Most of the decline has come […]
Most See Inequality Growing, but Partisans Differ over Solutions
Survey Report There is broad public agreement that economic inequality has grown over the past decade. But as President Obama prepares for Tuesday’s State of the Union, where he is expected to unveil proposals for dealing with inequality and poverty, there are wide partisan differences over how much the government should – and can – […]
Republicans More Optimistic than Democrats about Midterms
Less than a year out from the 2014 midterm elections, Republicans are more optimistic than Democrats about their party’s electoral prospects. But the “expectations gap” is far more modest now than it was prior to the 2010 election, when Republicans were brimming with confidence, or 2006, when most Democrats anticipated a midterm victory.
Public Trust in Government: 1958-2013
Public trust in the government, already quite low, has edged even lower in a survey conducted just before the Oct. 16 agreement to end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling. Explore public attitudes towards the federal government over time and compare the data with other key national indicators, such as consumer sentiment, the […]
Blame for Both Sides as Possible Government Shutdown Approaches
If the federal government shuts down because Republicans and the Obama administration fail to agree on a budget, there will be plenty of blame to go around. About as many say they would blame the Republicans (39%) for such a standoff as say they would blame Obama (36%), with 17% volunteering that both would […]