The latest findings from the Cultural Research Center at Arizona Christian University’s 2020 Post-Election Survey show a sharp and relatively rapid decline in popular support for socialism, with less than a third of all American adults (32%) preferring it to capitalism in the wake of the 2020 election.
This, after reaching a peak of 41% of all U.S. adults in 2018.
According to the survey, conducted by CRC Director of Research Dr. George Barna, “integrated disciples” (adults who have a biblical worldview) and “SAGE Cons” (Spiritually Active Governance Engaged Conservative Christians), expressed the least support for socialism—at only 12%.
The most precipitous decline was among Americans ages 30 to 49, with a 15 percentage-point decline from 49% to 34%. Americans 50-and-older posted an eight percentage-point decline (30% to 23%), remaining the age group most consistent in supporting capitalism over socialism.
Younger Americans (under 30) continued to show the highest support for socialism of any age group, yet even their support dipped from 48% to 43%.
ACU President Len Munsil finds the results encouraging, considering the university’s emphasis on strategic biblical worldview training and that support for the free market is among the school’s CORE Commitments.
“The survey shows that having a biblical worldview is the best defense against the proliferation of socialism,” he explained. “At ACU, we train students to apply the biblical worldview to every area of life. Economics is no exception.”
Munsil continued, “The findings also show that support for socialism among younger Americans is declining—which means minds can be changed. Our students are challenged to engage seriously with the moral and Scriptural arguments for the free market, and to look critically at the ideas and consequences of socialism.”
Having tracked public opinion on the matter for nearly a decade, Barna said the most recent findings demonstrate our nation’s ongoing ambivalence over socialism.
“These significant swings in support over such a short time period reflect an underlying absence of deep understanding of how our nation’s economic system and institutions operate,” he said, stressing the importance of educating Americans about socialism.
“Transitioning from socialism to capitalism would be a major, life-changing choice that would have an immeasurable impact on the health and well-being of our country and its people,” Barna continued. “Yet, because they are inadequately educated on these matters, many people are easily swayed by superficial, tangential, or emotional arguments. It’s in America’s best interests to help people of all ages better understand the meaning, dangers and long-term implications of socialism before substantial systemic changes are made.”
The nationwide 2020 Post-Election Survey was conducted from Nov. 4 through 16, 2020. Click here for a full report of the results, including:
· Support for socialism by age, race, sex
· Support for socialism by faith perspective
· Patterns in faith and governance preferences
· Past insights on Opinions about socialism
The Cultural Research Center (CRC) at Arizona Christian University is located on the school’s campus in Glendale, Arizona, in the Phoenix metropolitan area. CRC conducts nationwide research studies to understand the intersection of faith and culture and shares that information with organizations dedicated to transforming American culture with biblical truth.