Is America Great Yet?

Four months into the Trump presidency, Ipsos explores whether America is ‘great’ yet.

Is America Great Yet?

The author(s)

  • Julia Clark Senior Vice President, US, Ipsos Public Affairs
  • Chris Jackson Vice President, US, Ipsos Public Affairs
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Washington, DC —  Four months into the Trump presidency, Ipsos explores whether America is ‘great’ yet. Over half of Americans describe America as great (51%), but only 16% believe America is currently at its “greatest”. Americans give America a 7.3 out of 10 on a scale of “greatness.”

How great is America today? 7.3

A plurality believe the 1990s were America’s period of peak greatness (19%), an especially strong belief among Democrats (27%). Republicans are most likely to believe the 1980s were when America was greatest (21%), closely followed by the 1950s (18%). Nearly one in ten Americans believe America was never great (9%), a figure which doubles among minorities only (18%).

When measuring America’s greatness, Americans think the economy (91%), the American people (91%), and our education system (90%) are some of the most important factors. The freedom to bear arms was the least likely to be considered an important factor (57%) from our list, but is highest among Republicans with 47% saying it is an extremely important factor.

For more analysis, visit Ipsos Gen Pop

Topline results are available for download.

About the Study

These are findings from an Ipsos poll conducted May 12-16, 2017. For the survey, a sample of roughly 2,018 adults age 18+ from the continental U.S., Alaska and Hawaii was interviewed online in English. The sample includes 716 Democrats, 685 Republicans, and 413 Independents.

The sample for this study was randomly drawn from Ipsos’s online panel (see link below for more info on “Access Panels and Recruitment”), partner online panel sources, and “river” sampling (see link below for more info on the Ipsos “Ampario Overview” sample method) and does not rely on a population frame in the traditional sense. Ipsos uses fixed sample targets, unique to each study, in drawing sample. After a sample has been obtained from the Ipsos panel, Ipsos calibrates respondent characteristics to be representative of the U.S. Population using standard procedures such as raking-ratio adjustments. The source of these population targets is U.S. Census 2013 American Community Survey data. The sample drawn for this study reflects fixed sample targets on demographics. Post-hoc weights were made to the population characteristics on gender, age, race/ethnicity, region, and education.

Statistical margins of error are not applicable to online polls. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error and measurement error. Where figures do not sum to 100, this is due to the effects of rounding. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll has a credibility interval of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points for all respondents. Ipsos calculates a design effect (DEFF) for each study based on the variation of the weights, following the formula of Kish (1965). This study had a credibility interval adjusted for design effect of the following (n=2,018, DEFF=1.5, adjusted Confidence Interval=4).

The poll also has a credibility interval plus or minus 4.2 percentage points for Democrats, plus or minus 4.3 percentage points for Republicans, and plus or minus 5.5 percentage points for Independents. 
For more information about conducting research intended for public release or Ipsos’ online polling methodology, please visit our Public Opinion Polling and Communication page where you can  download our brochure, see our public release protocol, or contact us.

For more information on this news release please contact:

Julia Clark
Senior Vice President
Ipsos Public Affairs

Chris Jackson
Vice President
Ipsos Public Affairs

About Ipsos Public Affairs

Ipsos Public Affairs is a non-partisan, objective, survey-based research practice made up of seasoned professionals. We conduct strategic research initiatives for a diverse number of American and international organizations, based not only on public opinion research, but elite stakeholder, corporate, and media opinion research.

Ipsos has media partnerships with the most prestigious news organizations around the world. In Canada, the U.S., UK, and internationally, Ipsos Public Affairs is the media polling supplier to Reuters News, the world's leading source of intelligent information for businesses and professionals. Ipsos Public Affairs is a member of the Ipsos Group, a leading global survey-based market research company. We provide boutique-style customer service and work closely with our clients, while also undertaking global research.

About Ipsos

Ipsos is an independent market research company controlled and managed by research professionals. Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has grown into a worldwide research group with a strong presence in all key markets. Ipsos ranks fourth in the global research industry.

With offices in 89 countries, Ipsos delivers insightful expertise across five research specializations: brand, advertising and media; customer loyalty; marketing; public affairs research; and survey management.

Ipsos researchers assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media and they measure public opinion around the globe.

Ipsos has been listed on the Paris Stock Exchange since 1999 and generated global revenues of €1,782.7 million in 2016.


The author(s)

  • Julia Clark Senior Vice President, US, Ipsos Public Affairs
  • Chris Jackson Vice President, US, Ipsos Public Affairs

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