A Partisan Divide on Climate Change Concerns

Washington Post: “A clear but declining majority of Americans say climate change is a serious problem facing the United States in a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, with giant partisan disagreement on all aspects of the issue.”

“Sixty-three percent of Americans say climate change is a serious problem facing the country, slipping from 69 percent in June. Just over half say the issue is ‘very serious,’ also dipping by a similar amount.”

“The poll finds that nearly half of Americans, 47 percent, say the federal government should do more to deal with global warming than it does today, marking a decline from 61 percent in 2008 during the final year of George W. Bush’s presidency.”

“The large gap between perception and reality of scientific agreement reflects the heated nature of political debates over policy on the issue, as well as the impact of efforts to raise skepticism about scientific consensus. A Yale University study published this month found a tight connection between corporate funding and publications raising doubts about long-term climate change.”

“The survey finds that the biggest partisan disagreements exist among those with more education. Among people who have graduated from college, Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents are 43 percentage points more likely than Americans who lean Republican to say scientists agree on global warming. Among those without college degrees, the partisan gap is 22 points, about half as large.”

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