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Majority in U.S. say federal government has too much power

Staff Writer |
In the first year of Donald Trump's presidency, a majority (55%) of Americans believe the federal government has too much power.

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This is down slightly from the last several years of the Obama presidency, when it hovered near 60%.

Roughly a third of Americans think the government has the right amount of power, while just 7% think it has too little.

These results are from Gallup's annual Governance survey, conducted Sept. 6-10.

The current sentiment that government is too powerful is broadly in line with the trend since 2006 when the majority - between 51% and 60% - have felt this way.

Americans expressed lower levels of concern about government power in the years following 9/11.

Between 39% and 43% of U.S. adults said the government had too much power during George W. Bush's first term.

However, apprehension increased as Americans' belief that the Iraq War was a "mistake" mounted, reaching a majority in 2005.

Growing public concern about the Patriot Act, the law passed after 9/11 that increased the government's access to perform surveillance people living in the U.S., may have also raised public anxiety about government power.

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