New Poll Finds Pope’s Unfavorable Rating At All-Time High

A new survey conducted this past December has found that while most American adults still have a favourable view of Pope Francis, the percentage that hold an unfavourable opinion of the pontiff has risen to a new ten-year high.

The survey, conducted 1-20 Dec by the Gallup organisation, found that 58 per cent of American adults overall have a favourable opinion of Francis, the same as when he became pope in 2013. However, over the same period, the percentage of American adults who have an unfavourable opinion of Francis has risen from 10 per cent to a new high of 30 per cent.

The percentage of American adults who have not heard of, or hold no opinion of, the pontiff has also dropped from 31 per cent in 2013 to 11 per cent in the latest survey, the data shows.

The survey data shows a similar trend among American Catholics as among American adults generally, in the sense of a rising level of unfavourable opinion. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given a polarised political environment in both Church and state, Francis’s favourability amongst self-described liberal American Catholics has increased since 2013, while his favourability among conservative American Catholics has declined.

The survey found that 77 per cent of American Catholics overall have a favourable view of Francis, compared to 80 per cent in 2013. Meanwhile, 17 per cent of American Catholics have an unfavourable view of Francis, up from five per cent in 2013.

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