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48% Say America’s Best Days Are in the Past

While a plurality of voters continue to feel America’s best days are behind us, most still feel U.S. society is fair and decent.

A new Rasmussen reports national telephone survey finds that 40% of Likely U.S. Voters say the country’s best days are in the future, but 48% say they’re in the past.  Another 12% are not sure.  These findings have remained fairly consistent for several years now.  (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Two-out-of three voters (66%) say, generally speaking, American society is fair and decent, a view that has ranged from a low of 54% to a high of 74% since November 2006.  Only 19% now feel society is unfair and discriminatory, and another 14% are undecided. 

When asked how President Obama views society, voters nationwide are evenly divided:  40% say the president views society as fair and decent, while slightly more (42%) say he sees society as unfair and discriminatory.  Seventeen percent (17%) are not sure.  For the most part, voter sentiments on the president’s views of society have been evenly divided since just after Election Day in 2008. 

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The survey of 1,000 Likely U.S. Voters was conducted on February 16-17, 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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