As the election nears, voters continue to be more fearful than hopeful about the state of the country. Nearly two-thirds of registered voters (65%) say they feel fearful about the state of the U.S., while fewer than half (45%) say they are hopeful. These views have changed little since June.
Voters who support or lean toward Joe Biden are especially likely to say they feel fearful thinking about the state of the country. Nearly eight-in-ten Biden supporters (79%) say this, compared with about half of Donald Trump supporters (47%).
And Trump supporters are about twice as likely as Biden supporters to say they feel hopeful about the state of the country (64% vs. 31%).
Public’s views of economy turn more positive, with most of the increase among Republicans
Among the public overall, views of the economy have become somewhat more positive since the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic. A third of Americans now say that national economic conditions are excellent or good, up from 25% in June and 23% in April.
Most of the increase in positive economic views has come among Republicans and Republican-leaning independents. The share of Republicans who say the economy is excellent or good has increased 11 percentage points since June and 20 points since April.
Democrats’ views are little changed over this period. Currently, 13% of Democrats and Democratic leaners say economic conditions are excellent or good, up slightly from 9% in June.
Republicans also are more bullish about the economy’s future. Among all adults, 52% say that economic conditions will be better in a year, 17% say they will be worse and 30% expect conditions to be about the same as they are now. Among Republicans, nearly two-thirds (65%) expect conditions to be better in a year, compared with about four-in-ten Democrats (42%).
CORRECTION (October 9, 2020): In the chart “Nearly two-thirds of voters say they are ‘fearful’ about the state of the country” the percent of “Trump/Lean Trump” supporters who are fearful has been updated to 47%. The percent of Biden/Lean Biden supporters who are hopeful has been updated to 31%. The text was also updated to reflect this. These changes did not affect the report’s substantive findings.