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66% Believe U.S. Has Too Much Government Power, Too Little Freedom

From the beginning of the nation, Americans have recognized a necessary tension between giving power to government and maintaining individual freedom. The Federalist Papers, written to advocate ratification of the Constitution, noted that when creating a government “the people must cede to it some of their natural rights in order to vest it with requisite powers.”

Today, however, 66% of Likely U.S. Voters believe that there is too much government power and too little individual freedom. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just eight percent (8%) believe the opposite to be true. Twenty-two percent (22%) think the balance is about right.  (To see survey question wording, click here.)

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The national survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on July 7-8, 2012 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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The national survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on July 7-8, 2012 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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