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35% Say America’s Best Days Lie Ahead, 47% Disagree

Voters are slightly less pessimistic about the nation’s future this month.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 35% of Likely U.S. Voters now believe America's best days lie ahead. Still, that's up four points from last month which marked the highest level of pessimism in nearly five years of surveying. A plurality (47%) continues to believe America's best days are in the past, but that’s down six points from April. Eighteen percent (18%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Confidence in the nation’s future has ranged from 31% to 48% since late 2006 but has generally been in the mid- to high 30s for much of the Obama presidency. Those who think America’s best days are gone have ranged from 37% to 53% since November 2006.

The Political Class is much more optimistic. While 54% of Mainstream voters think America’s best days are in the past, 73% of the Political Class see those days in the future.

Voters under the age of 40 are more optimistic about the future of the country than their elders. 

Fifty-nine percent (59%) of blacks say America’s best days lie ahead, a view shared by just 31% of whites and 39% of voters of other races.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The national survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on May 25-26, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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