WASHINGTON - JANUARY 08: A joint session of Congress meets to count the Electoral College vote from the 2008 presidential election the House Chamber in the U.S. Capitol January 8, 2009 in Washington, DC. Congress met in a joint session to tally the Electoral College votes and certify Barack Obama to be the winner of the 2008 presidential election. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

With the 2020 campaign making headlines these days, it might be a good time to ask, just how important are politicians?  PoliticalIQ recently conducted a poll trying to get at this question, as well as how voters think the country would fare regardless of who wins the election.

As it turns out, an overwhelming amount of voters believe that politicians aren’t as important as the politicians, themselves, think they are.  The survey of Likely Voters, conducted by Scott Rasmussen, found 69% of voters thought less of politicians than politicians thought of themselves. This result crossed party lines whether the respondents were Republican, Democrat, or not associated with either party.

PoliticalIQ also asked about the influence of American culture on politicians. By more than 2 to 1, Likely Voters agreed with the statement that American culture leads and that politicians lag behind.  57% either Strongly or Somewhat Strongly agreed with this statement and 27% either Strongly or Somewhat Strongly disagreed. These results also crossed party lines.

Despite ranking politicians low on importance, most voters still worry that the future of America depends on who becomes President.  61% said they disagreed with the statement that the US will be OK regardless of who wins the presidential election.  That compares to 31% who said America would be OK with whomever won. 

PoliticalIQ will be releasing polls from key states up until the election, with Pennsylvania results later today and Texas tomorrow.


The survey of 1,842 Likely Voters was conducted by Scott Rasmussen using a mixed mode approach from October 23-24, 2020. Field work for the survey was conducted by RMG Research, Inc. Most respondents were contacted online or via text while 203 were contacted using automated phone polling techniques. Online respondents were selected from a list of Registered Voters and through a process of Random Digital Engagement. The Likely Voter sample was derived from a larger sample of Registered Voters using screening questions and other factors. Certain quotas were applied to the larger sample and lightly weighted by geography, gender, age, race, education, and political party to reasonably reflect the nation’s population of Registered Voters. Other variables were reviewed to ensure that the final sample is representative of that population.

The margin of sampling error for the full sample is +/- 2.3 percentage points.

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