Friends and fellow citizens,
On July 12, we released our second Vanderbilt Unity Poll, which asks Americans about their perception of polarization and our democratic institutions. The latest poll had some interesting results, including broad consensus on laws to prevent school shootings and seemingly overwhelming support for bipartisanship.
Unity Poll Results
The Vanderbilt Unity Poll shows Americans uniformly support solution-oriented government, including compromise on gun control, but the majority of respondents expect the country will not be able to come together to solve urgent problems. Key takeaways include:
* A majority of those polled (62 percent) believe Americans are incapable of uniting to solve important problems, yet 79 percent wanted their elected officials to work with members of the opposing party-even if that meant compromising on some partisan values.
*Poll respondents also found common ground on gun control to prevent school shootings with 81 percent supporting ‘red flag’ laws, 72 percent supporting gun safe laws, and 62 percent supporting assault-style weapons bans.
*An even larger portion-85 percent-supported the recent debt ceiling deal between U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and President Joe Biden. More than 80 percent of GOP respondents, 89 percent of Democrats and even 70 percent of those who identify as MAGA Republicans supported the compromise.
*Nearly three-quarters of poll respondents (73 percent) want the FDA’s approval of the abortion pill mifepristone to be upheld.
Poll respondents also showed some agreement on the leading cause of climate change. A plurality (43 percent) of poll respondents believe climate change is occurring because of a combination of human activities and natural environment changes, while 38 percent say it is caused by human activities alone.
*”These results provide evidence that the loudest voices on cable news or social media do not represent the attitude of most Americans. To the contrary, this data shows that most citizens want the government to work and understand that compromise is necessary in a functioning democracy,” said Vanderbilt political scientist John Geer, who oversees the Vanderbilt Project on Unity & American Democracy.
We have plans to update these results quarterly, so I hope you will stay tuned for future releases.
The Vanderbilt Project On Unity & American Democracy