Two in five Americans say a civil war is at least somewhat likely in the next decade

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New polling by the Economist and YouGov asked Americans about changes in the U.S. political climate, including whether divisions have worsened and what they expect in the future. We find that most Americans believe divisions have gotten worse since the start of 2021 and most expect them to grow in the coming years. Two in five Americans believe a civil war is at least somewhat likely in the next decade; Republicans are more likely than Democrats to expect civil war.

Two-thirds of Americans (66%) believe that political divisions in this country have gotten worse since the beginning of 2021, compared to only 8% who say the country has grown less divided. Few see things improving in the coming years: 62% expect an increase in political divisions. 

A similar share (63%) to the proportion who say political divisions have worsened (66%) say political violence has increased since the start of 2021. Three in five Americans (60%) anticipate an increase in political violence in the next few years and only 9% expect political violence to decline.

By Taylor Orth

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