About four in 10 Americans now identify as “very conservative.” This comes from Gallup’s annual Values and Belief Survey, which showed both social and economic conservatism on the rise throughout the country.

The May 1-24 poll showed that 38% of Americans claim to be very conservative, up from 33% in 2021, and the highest percentage since 2012. Simultaneously, the percentage who say they are “very liberal or liberal” has fallen from 34% in 2022 to just 29% this year.

The Gallup findings come at a time when many states are enacting policies to limit transgender ideology, abortion, critical race theory and radical sex-education in public schools.

“The increase in conservative identification on social issues over the past two years is seen among nearly all political and demographic subgroups,” Gallup reports. “Republicans show one of the largest increases, from 60% in 2021 to 74% today. Independents show a modest uptick of five percentage points, from 24% to 29%, while there has been no change among Democrats (10% in both 2021 and 2023).”

The conservative movement is even impacting younger Americans.

“Since 2021, there have been double-digit increases in conservative social ideology among middle-aged adults — those between the ages of 30 and 64,” Gallup notes. “At the same time, older Americans’ ideology on social issues has been stable, while there has been a modest increase in conservative social ideology among young adults.”

Views on economic issues are also moving right with.

“The percentage saying they are conservative averaged 40% between 2020 and 2022,” Gallup found. “The current figure is the highest since 46% in 2012.”

“For most of the past eight years, Americans were about as likely to say they were liberal as conservative on social issues,” Gallup concluded. “This year, there is a more obvious conservative advantage. The shift is mostly due to increasing social conservatism among Republicans, at a time when social issues such as transgender rights, abortion and other hot-button concerns are prominent in the national public debate.”

Gallup suggests that the conservative uptick may be driven by the fact that many Republican states have passed prolife laws, limits on transgender sports participation and restrictions on the ability of teachers to impart left-leaning views during school hours.

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U.S. social conservatism at highest level in a decade

Joel Davidson
Joel is Editor-in-Chief of the Alaska Watchman. Joel is an award winning journalist and has been reporting for over 24 years, He is a proud father of 8 children, and lives in Palmer, Alaska.