Americans still say the government is the biggest problem facing the country, a new poll reveals.
According to Gallup, 20 percent name “some aspect of the federal government or its elected leaders” as the top issue, based on a survey conducted in May.
While having one in five Americans thinking the government is a problem is not good, that number is slightly down from April and March, when 23 percent and 22 percent respectively said the government was the biggest issue.
Gallup noted that May’s results were a “bit lower” than over the previous three years.
Dissatisfaction with government has been the top problem in this survey now for 17 straight months, Gallup said.
Gallup’s findings about how Americans view government is in line with the Pew Research Center’s data, which show Americans’ confidence in government has been declining steadily since 2001, just one month after the terrorist attacks on September 11 of that year.
Immigration, a hot topic during the 2016 presidential campaign, has been the second most named problem for four out of the last five months, Gallup said.
The issue of race relations also concerns many Americans, with 7 percent to 8 percent saying it was the top problem since December.
Gallup’s findings contrast with a Bloomberg survey conducted just under one year ago.
In that poll, 35 percent of Americans said health care was the most important issue facing the country. Unemployment/jobs was second with 13 percent, and terrorism was third at 11 percent.
The Bloomberg poll was conducted when Republicans in Congress were in the process of trying to repeal the health care law known as the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. Their efforts were not successful, but many elements of Obamacare have been dismantled.
A spokesperson for Gallup said the discrepancy in the two surveys could stem from the fact that Gallup asked open-ended questions, while Bloomberg gave specific choices.
In fact, a March 2018 Gallup poll in which respondents were given a list of choices found that health care was the top concern, followed by crime/violence and federal spending/budget deficits.