July 21, 2007

See Poor as Too Dependent on Government Aid

69%

That’s the large percentage of Americans who, despite increasing support for government help for the poor, think that “poor people have become too dependent on government assistance programs.” Still, the number in agreement has declined from 79% in 1997.

In spite of an overall shift in favor of greater government help for the poor, a large majority (69%) of the U.S. public now agrees that “poor people have become too dependent on government assistance programs,” although that number has declined from 79% who took that view in 1997. The belief that poor people are overly reliant on government aid peaked in July 1994, when 85% felt poor people were too dependent and 46% completely agreed. Blacks and whites are more divided over this issue than they were in 2003 and the partisan gap also has grown slightly and, at 23 points, is now wider than at any time since 1992. Read More