Poll: Majority Sees America as Declining Power, Facing Economic Difficulty and Rising Crime Rates

January 2, 2013 - 2:00 PM

President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama at Fort Bliss in Texas on Aug. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

(CNSNews.com) - A majority of Americans believe America is a declining power, according to the USA Today/Gallup poll.

Similarly, majorities see rising crime rates and economic difficulty in the coming year, according the poll.

A majority of non-Democrats, according to the poll, also now believe America’s best days are behind her, while 50 percent of all Americans (including Democrats) believe that to be the case.

The USA Today/Gallup asked: “When you think about the future of the United States, which do you agree with more: the country’s best years are ahead of us or the country’s best years are behind us?”

Of the 1,025 American adults polled from Dec. 14-17, 50 percent said America’s best days are already behind us and 47 percent said they were ahead of us.

But the results on this question differed significantly by party affiliation. Seventy-four percent of Republicans said that America’s best days are behind us, while 24 percent said they are ahead of us. Fifty-five percent of Independents said America’s best days are behind us, while 43 percent said they were ahead of us. Among Democrats, 69 percent said America’s best days are ahead of us, while 28 percent said they are behind us.

When asked whether they thought 2013 would be a year of economic prosperity or difficulty, 65 percent of respondents said it would a year of economic difficulty and 33 percent said it would be a year of economic prosperity.

Fifty-seven percent said 2013 will be a year when American power declines in the world, while 37 percent said it would be year when American power increases. (Back in 1999, 60 percent said American power would increase and only 33 percent said it would decline.)

Sixty-eight percent said they believe 2013 will be a time of rising crime rates in America. Only 28 percent said they thought it would be a time of falling crime rates. Back in 1999, 54 percent thought crime rates would fall, and 44 percent thought they would rise.

Thirteen percent of the Americans polled by Gallup said they thought the federal budget would generally be in balance in 2013. Eighty-five percent said they thought that federal budget would be in deficit in 2013.

Neither the Republican Party nor the Democratic Party, nor President Obama nor any leader of Congress has called for a federal budget that is in balance in 2013.