Marist Poll: 68% Say Worst Yet to Come

Friday, 12 Aug 2011 09:32 PM

By Forrest Jones

Almost seven out of 10 Americans feel an already bad economy is going to get even worse before it gets better, according to a McClatchy-Marist poll.

Some 68 percent believe the worst of the country’s economic conditions are yet to come, while 27 percent say the worst is behind us, and 6 percent are unsure, according to the poll, conducted from Aug. 2 to Aug. 4.

Fear and uncertainty are on the rise, as a July poll found that 53 percent felt the economy was getting worse.

Of Republican voters, 75 percent felt the economy is going to get worse, while 71 percent of independent voters felt that way.

Democrats, meanwhile, were pretty gloomy as well, with 57 percent saying the worst was yet to come.

President Barack Obama, however, seems to be getting a pass.

The poll finds that 59 percent don’t blame Obama for the nation’s economic ills, while 33 percent do, with 8 percent saying they are unsure.

The McClatchy-Marist poll isn’t the only gloomy indicator out there, as consumer sentiment has dropped to a three-decade low.

A Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's preliminary August reading on the overall index on consumer sentiment came in at 54.9, the lowest since May 1980, down from 63.7 in July, Reuters reports.

The figure fell way below the median forecast of 63.0 among economists polled by the newswire.

High unemployment, poor wages and bickering over lifting the country’s debt ceiling spooked consumers to depths not seen since Jimmy Carter occupied the White House.

"Never before in the history of the surveys have so many consumers spontaneously mentioned negative aspects of the government's role," survey director Richard Curtin says, Reuters reports.

The poll was conducted before Standard & Poor’s downgraded U.S. ratings, Reuters reports. ... ode=CD4A-1