About half of Americans say democracy not working well in US: poll

Only about a tenth of Americans say that democracy is working very well, according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research released Friday.

A majority of Americans said that U.S. politics poorly reflects their values– 53 percent of respondents said that Congress is doing a bad job of upholding democratic values, compared to just 16 percent who said they are doing a good job.

Americans also showed little faith in the two major parties. 47 percent of respondents said the Democratic Party is doing a bad job of upholding democracy, while 56 percent said the same for Republicans.

“I don’t think either of them is doing a good job just because of the state of the economy — inflation is killing us,” Michael Brown, a conservative who responded to the poll, told The Associated Press. “Right now I’m making as much as I ever have, and I’m struggling as much as I ever have.”

“They’re fighting over something, and it has nothing to do with the economy,” Brown said. “Hunter Biden — what does that have to do with us?” he asked.

Many Americans also don’t feel represented by government interests. About 6 in 10 Republicans and 4 in 10 Democrats said that “people like them” are not represented well.

The sentiment also carries over to specific issues, with stark partisan divides on what policy issues survey respondents said align with public opinion. 

Nearly 80 percent of Republicans said that government spending does not align with public opinion, with just 54 percent percent of Democrats agreeing.

Opinions also landed sharply along partisan lines on abortion policy, gun policy and the economy, which are already divisive issues across the nation. 

Overall, Americans agreed the most on climate change policy, which 54 percent of Republicans and 56 percent of Democrats said aligns with public opinion.

The survey polled 1,220 adults in late June, with a margin of error of 3.9 percent.

About 40 percent of Americans approve of President Biden’s performance as commander in chief so far, according to polling released Wednesday. The rate did not move from June to July, the monthly survey results showed. The 40 percent rating is a slight improvement from May, which was the lowest rating of his presidency to date.

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