(CN) – Americans think Democrats care more about the middle class than Republicans, although public criticism of both parties remains high, according to a Pew Research survey released Tuesday.
Researchers who surveyed more than 2,500 adults from across the country between June 8 and June 18 found that, despite ongoing and escalating tumult in Washington, overall impressions of the GOP and the Democratic Party, and of President Donald Trump, have changed little since April.
Trump’s approval rating continues to remain more negative than positive, with only 39 percent of the public approving of the way he is handling his job, while 55 percent disapprove.
A similar percentage of Americans, 54 percent, have an unfavorable impression of the Republican Party, although opinions about the Democratic Party are similar, with 50 percent of survey respondents reporting an unfavorable impression of the left-leaning party.
However, the survey found that 57 percent of Americans believe the Democratic Party “cares about the middle class,” while only 42 percent of Americans believe the same is true for Republicans.
Similar percentages appear in the presidential approval portion of the survey.
Middle-income earners – those making between $30,000 to $74,999 per year – are more likely to disapprove of the way Trump is handling the presidency. Fifty-four percent of them disapprove of the way Trump is doing his job, while 39 percent expressed approval.
However, not all middle-income earners are so disapproving of Trump. According to the survey, 50 percent of white middle-income earners approve of the way the president is doing his job.
In general, the survey results reflected that Republicans and Democrats alike associate positive traits with their own party, while holding negative views of the other party.
Republicans, however, are more likely than Democrats to describe their own party as “too extreme.”
Twenty-four percent of Republicans agreed that their party was too extreme, while only 18 percent of Democrats said the same about their own party.
Republicans are also nearly twice as likely to say that the Democratic Party cares about the middle class than vice versa, with 31 percent of Republicans agreeing that the Democrats care about the middle class, compared to the 16 percent of Democrats who ascribed the same trait to the GOP.
Slightly more Democrats – 66 percent – said that their party “has high ethical standards,” compared with the 64 percent of Republicans who said the same of the GOP.
Majorities from both parties are critical of their approach to government spending, according to the survey.
Many Democrats, especially moderates, believe that the Democratic Party too often sees government as the only way to solve problems in society.
Overall, 44 percent of Democrats were critical of their party on this issue, while 50 percent of conservatives and moderate Democrats faulted their party for relying on the government to solve problems.
In contrast, only 35 percent of Republicans believe that the GOP is too willing to cut government programs, even when they work.