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People around the world see politicians as unsympathetic to common people and unable to effect change when elected, with more than half feeling dissatisfied with the state of democracy in their country, according to a survey of 27 nations by Pew Research Center.

Expand chart
Adapted from a Pew Research chart; Percentages are medians based on 27 countries; Data: Spring 2018 Global Attitudes Survey; Chart: Axios Visuals

Why it matters: Similar sentiments have driven a global surge in populism that led to the election of Donald Trump and events like Brexit over the past few years. While responses by nation vary, people are generally more optimistic about the state of free speech, economic opportunity and public safety in their nations than they are about their politicians and elections.

Between the lines: People who said their politicians were corrupt or out of touch were consistently more likely to say they were dissatisfied with the state of democracy in their nation, according to Pew.

By the numbers:

  • Indonesia and the Philippines had the highest share of respondents out of the 27 nations surveyed who said that politicians care what ordinary people think.
  • Greeks and Israelis were some of the least likely to see politicians as caring about common people.
  • 89% of Greeks and 82% of Russians said that most politicians were corrupt in their nations, compared to less than a quarter of people from Sweden, the Netherlands and Indonesia.
  • Mexicans were the least satisfied with how democracy was working, while Filipinos and Swedes were the most satisfied.

In the U.S., more than half say that most politicians are corrupt, don't care what common people think, and that not much changes after an election. 58% say they are dissatisfied with the way democracy is working.

Go deeper

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

British national named in Colleyville synagogue standoff

A law enforcement vehicle sits near the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue on Jan. 16. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

British national Malik Faisal Akram took four people hostage at a Texas synagogue outside Fort Worth on Saturday, the FBI said in a statement.

State of play: Authorities had initially declined to release the name of the 44-year-old suspect or identify the hostages, all adults, though police chief Michael Miller confirmed that one of those held was Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker, who leads the congregation.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Concerns grow over CDC's isolation guidelines — Experts warn of more COVID-19 variants after Omicron — WHO recommends 2 new treatments — What "mild" really means when it comes to Omicron — Deaths are climbing as cases skyrocket.
  2. Vaccines: America's vaccination drive runs out of gas— Puerto Rico expands booster shot requirements— Supreme Court blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for large employers.
  3. Politics: Vivek Murthy calls SCOTUS vaccine mandate block "a setback for public health" — Focus group says Biden weak on COVID response, strong on democracy
  4. Economy: America's labor shortage is bigger than the pandemic— — CDC COVID guidance for cruise ships to be optional starting Saturday — The cost of testing.
  5. States: West Virginia governor feeling "extremely unwell" after positive test — Youngkin ends mandates for masks in schools and COVID vaccinations for state workers — America struggles to keep schools open
  6. World: Beijing reports first local Omicron case weeks before Winter Olympics — Teachers in France stage mass walkout over COVID protocols.
  7. Variant tracker
10 hours ago - Sports

Novak Djokovic loses Australian visa appeal

Novak Djokovic of Serbia plays a forehand during a practice session ahead of the 2022 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 14, 2022. Photo: Daniel Pockett/Getty Images

Tennis star Novak Djokovic left Australia on Sunday evening, facing a three-year visa ban after an appeals court in the country revoked his visa.

Driving the news: Djokovic will not be able to defend his Australian Open title when the tournament starts in Melbourne. The World No. 1 is looking to break a three-way tie with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal for most Grand Slam men's singles titles.