Democrats and Republicans don’t agree much on what they see as the biggest problems facing the U.S., according to new poll data from Pew Research.
While more than two-thirds of Democrats and those who lean Democratic cite gun violence, health care affordability, Covid-19 and racism as serious issues, less than half of Republicans and those who lean Republican agree, with just 18% citing gun violence and 19% citing racism. Climate change and economic inequality face similar differences in opinion.
Republicans are far more concerned about illegal immigration and the federal budget deficit, the top two issues cited by more conservative adults.
Overall, 49% of poll respondents said they think the deficit is “a very big problem,” but partisan opinions on the deficit have changed substantially over the last few months. “Since last summer, Republicans and Democrats have diverged sharply in their views of whether the federal budget deficit represents a very big problem,” Pew said. “Today, 71% of Republicans say the federal budget deficit is a very big problem – 22 percentage points higher than the share saying this in June 2020. By comparison, about three-in-ten Democrats (31%) now say the deficit is a very big problem – 14 points lower than the share saying this last summer. As a result, Republicans are now 40 percentage points more likely than Democrats to say the deficit is a very big problem, a stark contrast to the lack of a substantial partisan gap in these views 10 months ago.”