WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. – Socialism isn’t popular in the United States, but it also isn’t reviled.
That’s the finding of a newly released Monmouth University Poll in which 57% of those polled agreed that socialism “is not compatible with American values.” 29% believed it is compatible.
Things get a little more complicated when respondents were asked about whether they view socialism negatively or positively. Only 42% hold a negative opinion; 45% are neutral and 10% feel positively towards socialism.
Capitalism fares better but performs weakly. 39% are favorable towards capitalism while 40% are neutral and 17% report a negative opinion.
“We may be in a period of flux with how these economic systems are viewed. 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,” opined Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute, noting some big government policies like universal health care – long associated with socialism – are more popular than socialism itself.
There’s a partisan split (with Democrats expressing far less negative views towards socialism than Republicans), but the age gap is significant. Click here to view the full polling report including cross tabs.