Survey: Democratic, Republican confidence in science diverges

Sixty-four percent of U.S. adults say they have "a great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in science, compared with 70% when Gallup last measured it more than four decades ago. The modest decline overall obscures more significant changes among political partisans. Republicans today are much less likely than their predecessors in 1975 to have confidence in science. Meanwhile, Democrats today have more confidence than their fellow partisans did in the past...

Recent disagreements between Republicans and Democrats about the seriousness of the coronavirus pandemic, the effectiveness of face masks as a COVID-19 prevention measure, and the necessity of COVID-19 vaccines have raised questions about the extent to which each group believes in science, more generally.

Additionally, many Republican political leaders' statements and policies have been critical of COVID-19 guidance put forth by health experts, and GOP leaders have often resisted requiring citizens to follow mitigation strategies. In contrast, Democratic leaders have generally pursued policies to prevent the spread of the coronavirus but imposed restrictions on social and economic activity.