If it's in the News, it's in our Polls. Public opinion polling since 2003.


Americans Look A Lot Less Kindly on Boy Scouts

Favorable opinions of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) have fallen to an all-time low following the organization’s announcement this week that it is declaring bankruptcy in the face of hundreds of sexual abuse lawsuits. Americans are also less enthusiastic about scouting in general.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 56% of American Adults have a favorable opinion of the Boy Scouts, with 20% who have a Very Favorable one. But that overall finding is down dramatically from 75% in the summer of 2017. Positive opinions of the BSA sank to a previous low of 59% in April 2014 after the organization agreed to admit openly gay youngsters as scouts but refused to allow gay men to be scoutmasters.

Twenty-nine percent (29%) view the Boy Scouts unfavorably, but that includes Very Unfavorables of only 11%. Fifteen percent (15%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

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The survey of 1,000 American Adults was conducted February 18-19, 2020 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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