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47% See Increased Government Hiring as Bad for Economy

Most Americans favor some kind of government action to help the unemployed, but now nearly half oppose the idea of the government simply hiring more workers.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of American Adults shows that 31% think increased government hiring would be good for the economy. However, 47% say it would be bad for the economy if the government hires more, while 14% say it would have no impact. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Americans were more evenly divided in October, when 35% thought the government hiring more workers would be good for the economy and 39% said it would be bad. 

Thirty-two percent (32%) of adults now believe the government should do nothing if people can’t find work for an extended period of time. Sixteen percent (16%) say the government should extend their unemployment benefits indefinitely, while 28% think the government should pay for their retraining. Another 16% say the government should hire the long-term unemployed. These findings are little changed from October.

In February of last year, 44% adults said the government should not hire unemployed Americans.  Roughly the same number of (43%) felt that way in December 2009. 

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The survey of 1,000 Adults was conducted on February 25-26, 2011 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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