In 2020, 54 percent of Americans believed the government should be doing more to address the nation’s problems, according to a Gallup poll at the time.
But Gallup’s annual governance survey for 2021 tells a different story. Now, 52 percent of Americans believe the government is doing too much, a 23-point swing.
Even the percentage of Democrats who think the government is overreaching increased, from 13 percent to 18 percent. The number of Republicans who think the government is interfering too much rose from 75 percent to 80 percent.
But it was independents who moved the needle the most. The percentage of independents who said the government’s doing too many things jumped from 38% in 2020 to 57% this year.
Gallup noted that last year marked only the second time in the polling organization’s 29 years of asking the question that at least half of Americans supported an active role for government. The other time occurred in 2001, in the weeks after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, which briefly united the politically divided country as Americans rallied around the government.
The poll also indicates that half of all Americans prefer fewer government services and lower taxes, while 19% said they support higher taxes and more government services. Nearly three in ten said they wanted the current balance between services and taxes to continue.
This preference for fewer services and lower taxes appears to be one of the few consistencies in American politics over the years.
“In the five times Gallup has asked this question since 1993, the preference for lower taxes and fewer services has consistently prevailed, held either by pluralities or majorities of Americans, including a high of 56% in 2011,” Gallup noted. “Only as many as 25%, in 2019, have said they wanted higher taxes and more services.”
This is basic conservatism 101. It means that, despite the”progressive moment” and left-wing Democrats in the ascendancy, the United States of America is a profoundly conservative nation. Democrats who challenge that do so at their own peril.
Gallup also highlighted that 54% said the federal government has too much power, basically unchanged from 56% who said the same thing the last time the question was asked in 2019.
Gallup questioned 1,005 adults nationwide for the poll. The survey’s overall sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.
In addition to being conservative, the American people are also extremely wary of government power and have been so since our founding. This is another element of American exceptionalism that the left dismisses or denounces.
Indeed, the left is only distrustful of government power when they don’t have it. Lately, they’ve become positively unhinged when frozen out of control. The Supreme Court has to be changed because it’s not handing down decisions to their liking. Congress must march in lockstep with their agenda or “democracy is threatened.” You have to ask what would happen if the left got their way and packed the Supreme Court with radicals and made Congress a lapdog of a radical president.