Fiscal Confidence Index: May 2018 Results

Topline survey results from the Fiscal Confidence Index for May 2018. The FCI value for May is 51.

The Peter G. Peterson Foundation commissioned a poll by the Global Strategy Group and North Star Opinion Research to survey public opinion on the national debt. The nationwide poll included 1,004 U.S. registered voters, surveyed by telephone between May 21, 2018 and May 24, 2018. 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 May 2018 scores are: Concern (49), Priority (28), Expectations (76). 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 (49)

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 42%
Increased a little 23%
Decreased a little 11%
Decreased a lot 5%
(No change) 16%
(Don't Know/Refused) 3%
INCREASED (NET) 65%
DECREASED (NET) 16%

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 15%
Right direction - Somewhat 16%
Wrong track - Somewhat 18%
Wrong track - Strongly 39%
(Neither/Mixed) 8%
(Don't Know/Refused) 5%
RIGHT DIRECTION (NET) 30%
WRONG TRACK (NET) 57%
PRIORITY (28)

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 48%
Somewhat agree 27%
Somewhat disagree 14%
Strongly disagree 6%
(Don't Know/Refused) 5%
AGREE (NET) 74%
DISAGREE (NET) 20%

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 54%
A little more time 25%
A little less time 5%
A lot less time 6%
(The same amount of time) 6%
(Don't Know/Refused) 5%
MORE TIME (NET) 79%
LESS TIME (NET) 10%
EXPECTATIONS (76)

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 11%
Somewhat better 19%
Somewhat worse 24%
Much worse 37%
(No change) 5%
(Don't know/Refused) 5%
BETTER (NET) 29%
WORSE (NET) 61%

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 20%
Somewhat optimistic 25%
Somewhat pessimistic 20%
Very pessimistic 26%
(Neither/Mixed) 5%
(Don't Know/Refused) 4%
OPTIMISTIC (NET) 45%
PESSIMISTIC (NET) 46%

Why Fiscal Issues Matter in the 2018 Election

This election season is a critical opportunity for candidates to talk to voters about solutions to put us on a better path.

FISCAL ISSUES ILLUSTRATED

This series of infographics helps put some of today's most pressing fiscal debates in context.

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