COVID-19 Vaccine: Republicans Are Most Skeptical
A majority of Americans believe COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective, but most Republicans have their doubts.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 57% of American Adults believe COVID-19 vaccines are safe, including 32% who believe the vaccines are Very Safe. Thirty-one percent (31%) don’t think COVID-19 vaccines are safe, including 16% who say they are Not At All Safe. Another 12% are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
Opinions about the effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines are similar, with 54% believing the vaccines are effective, and 34% thinking they are not effective. Another 11% are not sure.
Politics clearly impacts beliefs about both the safety and effectiveness of the vaccines. While 78% of Democrats think COVID-19 vaccines are at least somewhat effective, only 32% of Republicans agree. Among those not affiliated with either major party, 53% believe the vaccines are at least somewhat effective and 35% say they’re not.
The survey of 1,115 American Adults was conducted on August 29-31, 2023 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.
Seventy-nine percent (79%) of Democrats believe COVID-19 vaccines are safe, including 53% who think they are Very Safe. However, just 38% of Republicans say COVID-19 vaccines are safe, with only 14% considering them to be Very Safe. Among the unaffiliated, 51% view COVID-19 vaccines as safe, including 26% who think they are Very Safe.
Sixty percent (60%) of whites, 55% of blacks and 49% of other minorities consider COVID-19 vaccines to be at least somewhat safe.
More men (62%) than women (52%) believe COVID-19 vaccines are at least somewhat safe.
Americans 65 and older are most likely to consider COVID-19 vaccines to be Very Safe and Very Effective. Women under 40 are most likely to be skeptical of the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines.
The higher the level of education, the greater the confidence in vaccine safety, with 52% of those with graduate degrees saying COVID-19 vaccines are Very Safe.
While 67% of those with annual incomes over $200,000 believe COVID-19 vaccines are Very Effective, only 17% of those earning between $30,000 and $50,000 a year share that belief.
Among Americans who believe COVID-19 vaccines are Very Effective, 84% also think the vaccines are Very Safe.
Government employees (17%) are less likely than private sector workers (26%) or retirees (36%) to believe COVID-19 vaccines are Very Effective.
Although two-thirds of Americans agree that racism remains a serious problem, many still think we talk too much about race.
Most Americans don’t think “Generation Z” – born since the late 1990s – are better than earlier generations, and many blame Internet access for Gen Z’s problems.
The survey of 1,112 American Adults was conducted on August 21-23, 2023 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.
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