Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Record high in US in 2013 say Big Government is Greatest Threat, Democrats and Independents at 56% and 71% up from 48% and 64% in 2011-Gallup poll

56% of democrats and 71% of independents in 2013 up from 48% and 64% in 2011. 92% of Republicans in 2013 say Big Government is biggest threat. Scroll down for last chart showing 2009 and 2011.

12/18/13, "Record High in U.S. Say Big Government Greatest Threat," Gallup poll, Jeffrey M. Jones

"Now 72% say it is greater threat than big business or big labor."

"Seventy-two percent of Americans say big government is a greater threat to the U.S. in the future than is big business or big labor, a record high in the nearly 50-year history of this question. The prior high for big government was 65% in 1999 and 2000. Big government has always topped big business and big labor, including in the initial asking in 1965, but just 35% named it at that time.

The latest update comes from a Dec. 5-8 poll. Gallup has documented a steady increase in concern about big government since 2009, rising from 55% in March 2009 to 64% in November 2011 and 72% today.
2013 by Political party
This suggests that government policies specific to the period, such as the Affordable Care Act -- perhaps coupled with recent revelations of government spying tactics by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden -- may be factors.

Currently, 21% name big business as the greatest threat, while 5%, a record low, say big labor. The high point for big labor was 29% in 1965. No more than 11% of Americans have chosen big labor since 1995, clearly reflecting the decline of the labor movement in the United States in recent decades.

The historical high choosing big business, 38%, came in 2002, after a series of corporate scandals rocked major corporations including Enron and Tyco. Also at that time, Americans may have been less willing to choose government given the rally in support for government institutions and officials after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Americans were also more likely to view big business as a big threat during the recent recession, with more than three in 10 choosing it in 2008 and 2009, a time when many large corporations, including financial and automotive companies, failed or were in danger of failing without government intervention. But fewer Americans now view big business as a threat -- the current 21% is the lowest Gallup has measured since 1983....

Each party group currently rates big government as the greatest threat to the country, including a record-high 92% of Republicans and 71% of independents, as well as 56% of Democrats. Democrats are most likely of the partisan groups to name big business as the biggest threat, at 36%; relatively few Republicans, 4%, view big business as the most threatening.

Democrats are more likely to see
government as a threat when a Republican is in office; however, they tend to see government as less threatening than Republicans do, and their concern about big government topped out at 62% in 2005 under Bush. During the Johnson, Nixon, Carter, and Reagan administrations, party differences were much more modest than they are today. ...


Americans have consistently viewed big government as a greater threat to the United States than either big business or big labor, but never more than they do now. That may be partly a reaction to an administration that favors the use of government to solve problems. Also, the revelation of widespread government monitoring of U.S. Internet activity may be a factor in raising Americans' concern about the government. The threat of big business may seem diminished now, during a relatively calm period for big business, with rising stock values and relatively few major corporate scandals such as occurred in the early 2000s. Also, the labor movement is far less influential in U.S. policy today than in the past, including in 1965, when Gallup first asked the question.

In the future, Americans likely will continue to view big government as the greatest threat of the three, partly because of Republicans' reluctance to rely on government to solve problems, and because Democrats and independents are also inclined to view big government as a greater threat than big business or big labor. But the percentage of Americans viewing big government as the greatest threat will also likely to continue to vary, in response to current conditions in the political and business environments."


Comment: Big business and big labor may seem "less influential" today as stated above but the two partner with federal government today so in important ways are more powerful than ever. The article cites "rising stock prices" as a reason people may not be upset with big business. This may be so but again not reality. Today's stock prices are more a reflection of federal reserve actions, not business health. ed.


"The Gallup poll was conducted from Dec. 5 to 8 and was based on interviews with more than 1,000 people across the country."

12/18/13, "Gallup: Record high fear 'big government'," The Hill, Julian Hattem

"A record number of Americans think that “big government” is the biggest threat to the country, according to a new poll.

The Gallup survey released on Wednesday showed that 72 percent of people say that “big government” is a bigger threat to the country than “big labor” or “big business.”

That’s the highest percentage of Americans who have expressed the preference since the pollster began asking the question in 1965.

According to the poll, just 21 percent of Americans cite “big business” as the greatest threat to the country, and only 5 percent have concerns about “big labor.”

The recent wariness about the government could be partly due to troubles with the recent rollout of ObamaCare, as well as revelations about surveillance from the National Security Agency (NSA), Gallup noted.

Though Republicans have driven the recent trend and are more concerned about government overreach, they are not alone. The survey found that 56 percent of Democrats and 71 percent of independents also fear “big government.”

The new findings chart a steady increase in concern about the government over recent years, since a low point in 2001 that could be partly attributable to sentiments following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The size of the federal government has certainly grown in recent years.

Though there are only imperfect metrics of measuring the pace of regulatory activity at the federal government, most accounts show that federal power is increasing every year.

Fears about "big government" have always topped the poll since Gallup began asking the question nearly 50 years ago.

The previous high mark for Americans’ concerns about the federal government was in 1999 and 2000, when 65 percent of the public said they feared it more than labor or business.

The Gallup poll was conducted from Dec. 5 to 8 and was based on interviews with more than 1,000 people across the country." via Free Republic


In 2011 democrats dissatisfaction with big government increased to 48% up from 32% in 2009:

12/12/11, "In U.S., Fear of Big Government at Near-Record Level,"
Gallup poll, Elizabeth Mendes

By polit. party, trend
In 2011, "Democrats lead increase in concerns about big government."
"Americans' concerns about the threat of big government continue to dwarf those about big business and big labor, and by an even larger margin now than in March 2009. The 64% of Americans who say big government will be the biggest threat to the country is just one percentage point shy of the record high, while the 26% who say big business is down from the 32% recorded during the recession. Relatively few name big labor as the greatest threat....

Democrats Lead Increase in Concern About Big Government

Almost half of Democrats now say big government is the biggest threat to the nation, more than say so about big business, and far more than were concerned about big government in March 2009. The 32% of Democrats concerned about big government at that time -- shortly after President Obama took office -- was down significantly from a reading in 2006, when George W. Bush was president.

By contrast, 82% of Republicans and 64% of independents today view big government as the biggest threat, slightly higher percentages than Gallup found in 2009.

Lower percentages of Democrats, Republicans, and independents are now concerned about big business than was the case in 2009."...chart above from Gallup, 12/12/11


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