The Hill - May 20, 2019
More than 4 in 10 respondents in a new Gallup poll now say that socialism would be a good thing for the U.S.
The survey results, released Monday, found that 43 percent of respondents said “some form of socialism” would be a good thing for the nation as a whole.
A little more than half — 51 percent — said that socialism would be a bad thing for the country. And 6 percent said they did not have an opinion.
The results show an increase of 15 points in the number of respondents who said socialism would be a good thing compared to a 1942 Roper/Fortune survey, in which just 25 percent of respondents said socialism would be a good thing and 40 percent said it would be bad.
The results contrast with a Monmouth University poll from earlier this month which found that 57 percent of voters believe that socialism is incompatible with American values.
The Gallup poll, which collected data between April 17-30, comes as more high-profile politicians label themselves socialist. Most notably, self-avowed democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has continued to poll in the top tier of the pool of 2020 Democratic candidates for president, though most of his competitors have distanced themselves from the label.
As the 2020 battle gets underway, Republicans have widely targeted Democrats for allegedly “embracing” socialism.
Gallup also found that Americans are more likely to favor free market over government control on a number of issues, including technological innovation, wealth distribution, the economy, wages, higher education and health care. Respondents favored government control in just two categories: environmental protection and consumers’ online privacy protection.
Respondents were split on their description of the U.S. economy, with 40 percent saying it leans more toward government control, 34 percent saying it leans toward free market control and 25 percent describing it as an equal mix of the two.
The poll of 1,024 adults has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.