America is far more divided on key issues than usual, a new Gallup Poll released Monday finds.
President-elect Donald Trump “prepares to take office as a record number of Americans perceive the nation as divided and less than half believe his actions will help unite the country,” according to a Gallup analysis. Trump did call for unity in his election night victory speech, urging people to “bind the wounds of division.”
Seventy-seven percent of Americans think the nation is divided on its most important values. Forty-nine percent thought Trump would do more to divide the country than unite it. Forty-one percent saw him being a unifier.
“All major subgroups of Americans share the view that the nation is divided,” the Nov. 9-13 survey found. About two-thirds of Republicans, 78 percent of independents and 83 percent of Democrats feel that way.
While it’s not unusual for the winning party’s backers to see the country as more unified, Gallup found that Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush “made unifying the country key goals of their campaigns and administrations, and Americans perceived each as likely to do more to bring the country together than drive it apart.”
However, each had approval ratings showing them to be unusually polarizing presidents.
Gallup has asked the unity question after the previous three presidential elections, and found “Americans are less optimistic about Trump bringing the country together than they were about Bush and Obama in those instances.”