While Americans nationwide gear up to celebrate the country’s most patriotic holiday later this week, Gallup released a poll Tuesday that says less than half of adult U.S. citizens are “extremely” proud to be American.
The results of Gallup’s latest poll show the U.S. has hit its lowest point in national pride since the polling agency first started asking about the subject in 2001, before the twin towers fell.
The Gallup poll was conducted June 3-16 with a random sample of 1,015 adults and has a margin of error of 4 percentage points.
The poll found that 70 percent of U.S. adults still said they were proud of be Americans. This year, however, marks the second consecutive year that fewer than half — 45 percent — identified as “extremely proud.”
The highest numbers Gallup received in the history of the poll came in the years following 9/11, which caused American pride to rise dramatically to 69 and 70 percent feeling “extremely proud” between 2002 and 2004.
Since 2005, as the war in Iraq dragged on, American pride mostly trended downward — all the way to its current low-point this year.
Among the highest groups to show a decrease in pride were Democrats, which again dipped to its lowest measure — only 22 percent saying they’re “extreme proud” — for the second straight year. That percentage was twice as high before the 2016 election.
The Republicans’ latest reading of 76 percent is much higher and only 10 points below its record high in 2003, according to Gallup. Even when Obama was in office for eight years, Republicans’ extreme pride never fell below 68 percent.
Forty-one percent of independents identified as “extremely proud” to be American in the new survey, which, like Democrats, is a new low.
While the survey asked for political affiliation before questioning, it also asked which parts of American society make them the most proud.
The poll’s results showed a strong majority listed American scientific achievements, the U.S. military, and the country’s culture and arts as reasons to feel proud. To a lesser degree, those polled expressed pride in economics, sporting achievements and diversity in race, ethnic background and religion.
Perhaps predictably in today’s political climate, only 32 percent of respondents said they were proud of the American political system, Gallup said. Similarly, only 37 percent of respondents said they were proud of the nation’s health and welfare system.