Published: May 21, 2019  Updated: January 30, 2020 at 8:44 am EST

Nearly half of Americans would vote for a socialist politician, while four in ten Americans believe that Socialism would be a good thing for the United States.

Specifically, forty-three percent of Americans claim that Socialism would be a good thing for the United States. Further, forty-seven percent would vote for a Socialist politician.

However, fifty-one percent of Americans polled believe that Socialism would be a bad thing for the country. Regardless, the percentage of persons who think that Socialism would benefit the United States is growing.

The results contrast from a poll taken in 1942, which found that forty percent described Socialism as a bad thing, twenty-five percent a good thing, and thirty-four percent had no opinion.

Americans have held a consistent view regarding Socialism for the past few years; in 2015, forty-seven percent of US adults also said they would vote for a Socialist.

The results were captured by a Gallup Poll, who surveyed over a thousand US adults. Further, the results obtained by Gallup slightly differ from those captured by a Monmouth University Poll, which found that fifty-seven percent of Americans believe that Socialism is incompatible with American values.

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“We may be in a period of flux with how these economic systems are viewed,” said Monmouth pollster Patrick Murray. “Socialism still carries a stigma, but many Americans feel they are being left behind by the current capitalist system. Policies that have traditionally been seen as socialist may be getting more popular even if the term itself is not.”
Meanwhile, 39 percent of respondents have a favorable view of capitalism, 40 percent are neutral, and 17 percent have an unfavorable outlook.

Seventy-eight percent of the voters who are pro-capitalist and anti-socialist are either Republicans or lean Republican, while 63 percent of those who are neutral toward both systems are either Democrats or lean Democratic.

We shouldn’t ignore the possibility that ‘neutral’ could be a way for some Americans, especially Democrats, to couch their policy preferences without using a term that has historically negative connotations,” said Murray. “This is going to be a real challenge for left-leaning candidates in the 2020 presidential race. The party base seems to be saying, ‘We like your platform; just don’t use the word socialism to describe it.”

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