Of those surveyed, 44% say the nation is able to overcome political divisions to solve problems, while 53% say it can’t. Almost two-thirds think government is unable to address long-term challenges.
Commitment to democracy and majority rule are viewed by 32% as a fairly or extremely accurate fundamental idea to associate with the nation, down from 53% in 1998. Half of the respondents say commitment to free markets is a good description of the country, down from 68% two decades ago.
The share who see the U.S. as “tolerant of others with different beliefs and lifestyles” has also dropped, from 35% to 26%.
More than four in 10 say they have stopped talking politics with a friend or family member because they know the person doesn’t share their views. One in five say they have blocked or unfriended someone on Facebook or elsewhere because of their political opinions, with women, younger people and Democrats most likely to do so.