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New survey finds agreement on most core American values

A new poll found most Americans agreeing on most of the country’s core values including the right to vote and freedom of religion.

The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found 91 percent of U.S. adults said the right to vote is either extremely or very important to the nation’s identity. Eighty-four percent of U.S. adults surveyed said freedom of religion is extremely or very important to the nation’s identity.

The results showed “only small variances between Republicans and Democrats,” except when asked about the right to keep and bear arms, The Associated Press reported.

Sixty percent of Republican respondents ranked the right to keep and bear arms as extremely important to the nation’s identity, 41 percent more than the 19 percent of Democratic respondents who said so.

The lesser agreement of Americans on the importance of the right to keep and bear arms to the U.S.’s identity mirrors the common political discord in the country on the topic of gun control, with Democrats usually backing stricter laws around what firearms Americans should have access to and who gets to keep them, and Republicans often backing less strict gun regulation.

Sixty percent of Democratic respondents said freedom of the press was extremely important to the nation’s identity, 15 percent more than the 45 percent of Republican respondents who said so.

Current presumptive GOP presidential nominee and former President Trump has also gone after the freedom of the press in the past, saying during his 2016 campaign that he was going to “open up” libel laws to sue media outlets.

“I’m gonna open up our libel laws, so when they write purposely negative and horrible, false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money,” Trump said at the time.

“We’re going to open up those libels laws,” he added. “So that when The New York Times writes a hit piece, which is a total disgrace, or when The Washington Post, which is there for other reasons, writes a hit piece, we can sue them and win money.”

The AP-NORC poll was conducted between March 21 and 25, featuring a sample of 1,282 people, with a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.8 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level. 

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