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Poll Reveals Younger Americans Are Skeptical About Democracy

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Poll Reveals Younger Americans Are Skeptical About Democracy
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Poll Reveals Younger Americans Are Skeptical About Democracy

Source: Pinterest

It’s another election year, and the competition remains fierce. However, the youth have the ability to sway the win in their favor if only they believe in democracy.

Polls

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An election year always comes with different kinds of polls. This is because such data is important to politicians to know how the public might vote and what areas they need to target. The Florida Atlantic University carried out a nationwide poll asking American participants, “Is democracy the best system?” The results of this poll showed an interesting twist that many politicians would like to know.

The Nationwide Poll

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Mainstreet Research conducted this nationwide poll from March 15th to 17th this year for Florida Atlantic University (FAU) PolCom Lab. Using text messages, it surveyed 1,053 registered voters whom they contacted via text messages, which had a link to the survey form online. Those who preferred calls were contacted using automated phone calls, and this included Democrats, Republicans, and Independents.

The Main Question

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The main question in this survey was whether people believe democracy is the best system the government can adopt. The results showed that most people agreed with this notion and voted ‘yes.’ Among all the voters, 73% agreed that democracy is the best option. In fact, 50% of them strongly agreed with this. Only 13% of the voters disagreed, and the rest were indifferent.

The Younger Voters’ Answers

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The younger voters, aged 18 to 35, shared a common trend in their answers. Only 53% of them are pro-democracy, with just 15% strongly agreeing to its benefits. Another 25% are skeptical about democracy. This is a significant difference from the older group of 65 years and older, whose population is 89% pro-democracy. 73% of them strongly agree with the leadership style, while only 6% are skeptical.

Have Younger Voters Lost Faith?

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A political scientist from the university, Kevin Wagner, believes the outcome of this poll is quite concerning. He said that “the distinction between younger voters and older voters is very stark.” He also suggested that “among younger voters, there is a loss of faith in the system and the process. That should cause us to ask why younger voters feel the democratic system is not working for them?”

Young Indecision

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Could the reason for this huge difference be attributed to youthful indifference? This is a possibility, as they are more likely to neither “agree nor disagree” when asked about democracy. In the same study, 25% of the voters in the youthful age group alone chose the option of indifference, compared to only 14% for the rest of the voting population.

Difference Between Biden and Trump Voters

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This poll also showed the difference between Trump’s and Biden’s voters and what they generally think about democracy. Among Biden’s supporters, 85% of them agreed that democracy was the best form of government for the country with 6% disagreeing and 10% remaining neutral. On the other hand, 63% of Trump’s voters supported democracy with 18% disagreeing and 19% being indifferent.

Democrats, Republicans, Independents

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For those with political party associations and not candidates, the differences were not so pronounced. 79% of Democrats were pro-democracy, 8% were not, and 13% were neutral. 69% of Republicans agreed that democracy was the best, 17% disagreed, and 13% stayed neutral. Lastly, for the Independents, 67% agreed, 15% disagreed, and 19% neither agreed nor disagreed.

High vs. Low-Income Voters

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Another significant category was the high-income earners vs the lower ones. Those earning as high as $100,000 a year or more majorly agreed with democracy at an 82% to 12% ratio. However, the lower earners who earned $50,000 a year or less had 68% agreeing with democracy and 16% disagreeing. According to Wagner, this was not surprising as most high earners would likely vote that the system was working well as it is in their favor.

Men vs. Women’s Opinions

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The poll also compared the answers from men to those of the women. However, there weren’t a lot of differences to note. 69% of women agreed, 15% disagreed, and 17% were neutral. For the men, 77% agreed, 12% disagreed, and 11% voted neither. Therefore, the gap is not so significant as to cause a huge divide between members of both genders.

Are Voters Satisfied with Democracy?

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The poll also asked a related question, “How satisfied or dissatisfied are you with the way democracy works in the United States?” To answer this, 46% of the voters were satisfied with the current state of democracy in the country. These were majorly Biden supporters. On the other hand, 39% were dissatisfied and they were majorly Trump supporters. 15% of the total voters were indifferent.

Americans Are Still Pro-Democracy

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“I think considering all the negativity that we hear, that’s actually a pretty good thing,” Wagner said. However, he also noted that “Many people are missing the fact that younger voters are actually pretty upset about the state of our political universe.” Therefore, he believes that Americans are still pro-democracy, although the younger voters are not necessarily satisfied with it.