Stories

Agreement on certain issues across party lines is growing

Photo: Elaine Thompson / AP

A "Democracy in America" dispatch by The Economist looks at the bright side of an otherwise bleak Pew Research Center study, and finds that "on some issues, and across party lines, agreement is growing."

Why it matters, from The Economist: "It seems that many dinner tables divided by party politics will still be united by the idea that there is much to give thanks for—even if everyone agrees that America has a lot to worry about."

The issues:

  • "Only 3% of Democrats and 8% of Republicans believe that increasing number of people from different races, ethnic groups and nationalities in America makes the country a worse place to live."
  • "The proportion of Republican supporters who see immigrants as a burden on the country has fallen from 64% in 1994 to 44% today."
  • Another Pew report found that "86% of Republicans believe they are on the way to achieving the 'American Dream' or have achieved it, along with 80% of Democrats."
  • Pew: "Only about one-in-five (17%) say the American dream is 'out of reach' for their family."
  • According to Gallup, "the proportion of Americans who reported they were satisfied with the way their life was going reached 87%, up from 78% in 2011 and only one percentage point below the highest number reported since the poll question was first asked by Gallup in 1979."

A sign of our times: "The percentage of Republicans who think homosexuality should be accepted, at 54%, now matches the percentage of Democrats who favored tolerance in 1994," 23 years ago.