Gallup: 50% Believe America’s Best Years Are Behind Us

By Jon Street | January 2, 2013 | 12:24pm EST

American flag. (AP)

( – Fifty percent of Americans now believe the country’s best years are past, according to Gallup, while 47 percent still say America’s best years are still to come.

In a poll published on Jan. 2, 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?

Fifty percent of those surveyed said that America’s best years are “behind us” while 47 percent said the country’s best years are “ahead of us.”

The Republicans polled were more pessimistic, with 74 percent saying America’s best years are “behind us” while 24 percent of GOP supporters said the best years are “ahead of us.”

Independents were also pessimistic, with 55 percent saying the country’s best years are past while 43 percent said the best is yet to come.

Democrats were optimistic, with only 28 percent saying America’s best years are gone and 69 percent saying the best years are coming.

When asked if they thought 2013 would be a year of difficulty or prosperity, 65 percent expect the new year to bring “difficulty” and 33 percent expect the year to bring “prosperity.” Two percent voiced “no opinion.”

Gallup also found that 42 percent expect rising unemployment in 2013 while 53 percent expect full or increased employment. Five percent had “no opinion.”

Regarding the costs of goods, 42 percent said they expect prices to rise at a “high rate” in 2013 and 57 percent expect the prices of goods to “rise at a reasonable rate.” Two percent said they had “no opinion” of whether prices would rise at high rates or reasonable rates this year.

According to Gallup, the survey was based on telephone interviews of 1,025 adults, living in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, on Dec. 14-17, 2012.

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