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11 Oct, 2015

Gallup Polls: U.S. Public Remains Wary of Federal Government’s Power

WASHINGTON, D.C., October 9, 2015, (Gallup media release)– Six in 10 Americans think the government has too much power, marking the third year in a row that at least 59% of the public has voiced this view. The 60% recorded in this survey ties the previous high from 2013 for the question, which Gallup has asked annually since 2002.

The solid majorities in 2013, 2014 and this year saying the federal government is too powerful differ significantly from the 51% Gallup measured in 2012. That poll was conducted in the days after the Democratic National Convention that helped propel Barack Obama to a re-election win that year. During President Obama’s first year in office in 2009, the percentage of Americans concerned with the power of the federal government was 51%.

By his second year in office, 2010, that percentage climbed to 59%, after the federal government passed the Affordable Care Act. The heightened concern about government power was a key factor in Republicans taking control of the House of Representatives in the 2010 midterm elections. A slight drop to 57% in 2011 was followed by the 2012 drop to 51%.

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