Poll: Americans united on a slew of issues, despite contentious election season

The findings — including that 8 in 10 Americans agree that “without our freedoms America is nothing” — could be telling in an election that features President Donald Trump and Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, battling each other to claim the mantle of uniter in chief while the country faces coinciding crises of public health and economic and racial justice.

Several of the rights and freedoms that an overwhelming bipartisan majority viewed as essential to being an American, however, go far beyond those provided directly by the Constitution, like freedom of speech and religion.

The right to clean air and water, for example, was considered important by 93 percent of those surveyed; protection of personal data, by 93 percent; the right to a quality education, by 92 percent; racial equality, by 92 percent; affordable health care, by 89 percent; and the right to a job, by 85 percent.

Of 16 rights and values polled, a majority considered every single one either very or somewhat important to being American today.