Most Americans continue to say that it would be “too risky” to give the nation’s presidents more power, but the share expressing this opinion has declined since last year, with most of the change coming among Republicans.
Currently, 66% of the public says “it would be too risky to give U.S. presidents more power to deal directly with many of the country’s problems.” About three-in-ten adults (29%) offer the contrasting opinion that “problems could be dealt with more effectively if U.S. presidents didn’t have to worry so much about Congress or the courts.” In March 2018, 76% of the public said it would be too risky to give presidents more power.
The survey by Pew Research Center, conducted July 10-15 among 1,502 adults, finds that Republicans’ views on this question have changed markedly since last year. About half of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents (51%) now say it would be too risky to give presidents more power, down from 70% last year.
The share of Republicans who say presidents could operate more effectively if they did not have to worry so much about Congress and the courts has increased 16 percentage points since then, from 27% to 43%.