Fiscal Confidence Index: September 2021 Results

Topline survey results from the Fiscal Confidence Index for September 2021. The FCI value for September is 43.

The Peter G. Peterson Foundation commissioned this poll by the Global Strategy Group and North Star Opinion Research to survey public opinion on the national debt. The online poll included 1,000 registered voters nationwide, surveyed between September 20, 2021 and September 22, 2021. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.1%. The poll examined voters’ opinions on the national debt, political leadership, and America’s fiscal and economic health.

The Fiscal Confidence Index value is derived from six questions in three categories: Concern, Priority, and Expectations. The September 2021 scores are: Concern (41), Priority (26), Expectations (60). For the complete methodology used to determine the Fiscal Confidence Index value, click here. For full results, including demographic information, download the PDF below:


Concern (41)

Thinking about our national debt over the last few years, would you say your level of concern has increased or decreased?

Is that a lot or just a little?

Increased a lot 50%
Increased a little 29%
Decreased a little 5%
Decreased a lot 3%
(No change) 9%
(Don't Know/Refused) 3%
INCREASED (NET) 79%
DECREASED (NET) 8%

When it comes to addressing our national debt, would you say things in the United States are heading in the right direction or do you think things are off on the wrong track?

Do you feel that way strongly or just somewhat?

Right direction - Strongly 14%
Right direction - Somewhat 22%
Wrong track - Somewhat 22%
Wrong track - Strongly 37%
(Neither/Mixed) 1
(Don't Know/Refused) 5%
RIGHT DIRECTION (NET) 35%
WRONG TRACK (NET) 59%

Priority (30)

Some people say that addressing the national debt should be among the President and Congress' top 3 priorities. Do you agree or disagree?

Do you feel that way strongly or just somewhat?

Strongly agree 52%
Somewhat agree 25%
Somewhat disagree 12%
Strongly disagree 6%
(Don't Know/Refused) 5%
AGREE (NET) 77%
DISAGREE (NET) 18%

And when it comes to our national debt, do you think it is an issue that the President and Congress should spend more time addressing or less time addressing?

Would you say a lot (more or less) time or just a little?

A lot more time 50%
A little more time 32%
A little less time 6%
A lot less time 5%
(The same amount of time) 3%
(Don't Know/Refused) 5%
MORE TIME (NET) 81%
LESS TIME (NET) 11%

Expectations (60)

And thinking about our national debt over the next few years, do you expect the problem to get better or worse?

Is that much (better or worse) or just somewhat (better or worse)?

Much better 10%
Somewhat better 14%
Somewhat worse 31%
Much worse 38%
(No change) 3%
(Don't know/Refused) 5%
BETTER (NET) 24%
WORSE (NET) 69%

And when it comes to our national debt, are you optimistic or pessimistic that the United States will be able to make progress on our national debt over the next few years?

Would you say you are very (optimistic or pessimistic) or just somewhat?

Very optimistic 8%
Somewhat optimistic 30%
Somewhat pessimistic 30%
Very pessimistic 26%
(Neither/Mixed) 2%
(Don't Know/Refused) 4%
OPTIMISTIC (NET) 38%
PESSIMISTIC (NET) 56%

What Does the Debt Mean for Our Future?

We all have a responsibility to build a brighter fiscal and economic future for the next generation.

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