ST. LEO, Fla., March 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The United States is a country divided, according to a recent survey by the Saint Leo University Polling Institute. The nonpartisan poll shows 82.1 percent of respondents agree the nation is more divided than ever before following a contentious presidential election and the installation of a new administration.
The sentiment is felt across political leanings. Among respondents who say they are conservative, 83 percent say the country is more divided, while 79.6 percent who identified themselves as moderate, and 89.2 percent who say they are liberal, agree.
Saint Leo's poll indicates hope for reconciliation. The poll shows that 49.4 percent say that despite a sense of division in their communities, they are optimistic about reducing political discord. Another 37.2 percent say they do not think the divide can be bridged and 13.4 percent say they do not know.
"These new findings confirms the feeling that the country is very, very divided," said Frank Orlando, director of the Saint Leo University Polling Institute and a political scientist. "One of the most interesting things we find is that both people who voted for the president, and those who didn't, worry that the country is in trouble. It points to the fact that perhaps people believe that the problems facing the country run deeper than something politics can fix."
Poll respondents say the new White House administration is leading the nation toward authoritarianism with 51.9 percent reporting they strongly or somewhat agree, and 31.7 saying they strongly or somewhat disagree.
When considering the concept of free speech, most say free speech should be protected. Support varies among age groups, though, with 40.9 percent of respondents younger than 35 saying they agree with a statement that not all speech should be protected. The popularity of that view diminished with age. Results show 34.8 percent of those ages 36 to 65 agree not all speech should be protected; that view is held by 28.2 percent of those older than 65 agree.
The Saint Leo University Polling Institute survey results about Florida and national politics, public policy issues, Pope Francis' popularity, and other topics, can be found here: http://polls.saintleo.edu. You can also follow the institute on Twitter @saintleopolls.
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/saint-leo-university-poll-us-voters-divided-more-than-ever-300426285.html
SOURCE Saint Leo University Polling Institute