More Americans say things are going better in US: poll

More Americans said things are going better in the U.S., including the economy and inflation, at the start of 2023 than at the start of last year, according to a new CBS and YouGov poll.

The view of how things are going in America is slightly more positive this year, with 34 percent of Americans polled saying things are “going well,” compared to just 26 percent last year. Americans’ views of the economy are also up this year, as 31 percent said the economy is “good,” compared to 22 percent saying the same thing last year.

Americans are also more hopeful about the job market and the fight against the coronavirus, with 63 percent saying in the new survey they are optimistic about jobs in their community and 60 percent saying they are optimistic about the effort against the coronavirus.

Even as more Americans report that things were going better in the country, 49 percent said they are “scared” of how events will unfold in the country over the next year. Similarly, 47 percent said they are “hopeful” for what’s to come over the next year.

As Congress begins its new session after a tumultuous week of Speaker votes, most Americans surveyed said the elected body should focus on reducing inflation, protecting Social Society and Medicare and reducing crime as its top priorities.

After losing 14 straight Speakership elections, Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) was elected to the top position early Saturday morning on the 15th ballot. When asked about how GOP members handled electing the Speaker, Republicans said they approved, with 51 percent of those who voted Republican in 2022 giving their approval, according to the polling released Sunday. Hardline MAGA Republicans are more positive, with 65 percent saying they approved of how the election was run.

The poll also measured Americans’ attitudes toward democracy, with 62 percent saying that the U.S. democracy is “threatened,” a downtick from the 72 percent saying it was at this time last year. Election denialism is still significant among some Americans, with 36 percent of Republicans and 9 percent of Democrats saying the 2022 midterm elections were not legitimate.

CBS News and YouGov polled 2,144 adults Jan. 4-6. The margin of error is 2.9 percentage points.