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Monday, July 5, 2010

Public Opinion: the Declaration and Patriotism

Rasmussen reports:

This Independence Day, Americans overwhelmingly agree with the core ideals instilled in the founding document of the United States.

The Declaration of Independence, written primarily by Thomas Jefferson, asserts that “we are all endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights, among them life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 88% of American Adults agree with this phrase. Only six percent (6%) do not.

The following sentence dives deep into the focus of government, stating, “Governments derive their only just powers from the consent of the governed.” Two-thirds (68%) agree with this statement while 13% disagree and 19% are not sure.

However, one of the most depressing realities in today’s world is that only 21% of voters nationwide believe that the federal government now enjoys the consent of the governed.

Another statement from the Declaration, “all men are created equal,” is supported by 84%. Just 13% disagree with it.

Gallup reports:

One in three Americans (32%) now say they are "extremely patriotic," up from 26% in 2005 and 19% in 1999.

These findings are from a USA Today/Gallup poll conducted June 11-13, 2010, Gallup's first update of this question since 2005. The overall percentage of Americans describing themselves as "extremely patriotic" is now measurably higher than at any point in this Gallup trend, including in the months after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The difference between "extremely" and "very" patriotic is left to respondents to interpret.

At least 7 in 10 Americans since 2002 have consistently said they are "extremely" or "very" patriotic; 74% say so this year. This is up slightly since the 1990s.