Republicans Slightly More Optimistic Since Trump’s Election

(CN) – Since the election of President Donald Trump, Republicans have become far more hopeful about the country and its future – although many still feel like their side is losing more often than it’s winning, according to a Pew Research Center report released Friday.

In two telephone polls conducted between June and July among a national sample of more than 5,000 adults in the United States, Pew researchers found Republicans are much more positive today than they were a year ago.

When asked whether life in the United States has gotten better or worse for “people like you” over the past 50 years, researchers found that 44 percent of Republicans believe life is better than it was in the past.

A poll asking the same question in August 2016, however, found only 18 percent of Republicans believed life was better for people like them than it was in the past.

The poll found an opposite trend among Democrats. While only 24 percent of Democrats surveyed in August 2016 said they believed life had gotten worse in the past 50 years, 41 percent of Democrats polled in 2017 said life is worse.

Overall, more people now say the future for the next generation of Americans will be worse than life in the nation today.

During the economic recession of 2008, 32 percent of people said prospects for the next generation would be worse. Today, 46 percent of people believe that the next generation will be worse off than Americans are now.

Republicans, however, are slightly more optimistic about the future of the country than Democrats. While 30 percent of Republicans believe the next generation will have it better than life in America is now, 27 percent of Democrats believe the future will be better.

It’s a sharp improvement in the optimism of Republicans since last year, when 61 percent said the future would be worse and only 16 percent said it would be better.

According to the Pew report, there was a similar partisan shift in expectations for the future after the election of President Barack Obama in 2008, although Republicans are not nearly as optimistic about the future for the next generation now as Democrats were in early 2009. Fifty percent of Democrats surveyed in March 2009 believed that the next generation would have it better.

Although Republicans control the White House and both houses of Congress – and are more upbeat than Democrats about the country and its future – more Republicans feel like their side is losing.

Forty-six percent of Republicans surveyed believe they are losing on the issues that matter to them, compared to 42 percent who believe their side is winning more frequently on the important issues.

Seventy-nine percent of Democrats feel like their side is losing.

National satisfaction with how things are going remains low, according to the Pew report. The share of Americans expressing satisfaction with national conditions had been no more than 30 percent for more than a decade. Today, only 28 percent of Americans say they are satisfied with the direction the country is taking, compared to 67 percent of the public who say that they are dissatisfied.

 

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