Americans Are Increasingly Fearful That Democracy Will Collapse

More Americans are concerned that democracy in the U.S. is in danger of collapse, according to a new poll from Quinnipiac University.

The poll's findings, which were published on Wednesday, come ahead of President Joe Biden's scheduled prime-time address to the nation on Thursday night. Biden is expected to address threat to democracy during the speech.

The Quinnipiac poll found that 67 percent of Americans believe democracy is in danger of collapse compared to 29 percent who did not. This was a nine-point increase from a Quinnipiac poll in January, which found that 58 percent of Americans believed that U.S. democracy was in danger and 37 percent did not.

There was also broad bipartisan agreement with 69 percent of both Democrats and Republicans saying they believed democracy was in danger, as well as 66 percent of independents.

"In a rare moment of agreement, Americans coalesce around an ominous concern. Democracy, the bedrock of the nation, is in peril," said Quinnipiac University Polling Analyst Tim Malloy.

Biden Speaks on the South Lawn
President Joe Biden speaks during a signing ceremony for the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022, at an event on the South Lawn of the White House on August 9, 2022. Biden will deliver a speech on Thursday that a White House official said would focus on "the continued battle for the soul of the nation,” as a new poll shows most Americans believe democracy is in danger of collapse. SAUL LOEB / AFP/Getty Images

The Quinnipiac poll was conducted from August 24 to 29 among 1,584 U.S. adults and has a margin of error of +/-2.5 percent.

At 67 percent, a clear majority of Americans in the poll are concerned about the democracy and that figure is approaching the share of Americans who expressed similar concerns in the immediate aftermath of the Capitol riot on January 6, 2021.

A Quinnipiac poll published on January 11, 2021 found that 74 percent of voters believed U.S. democracy was under threat.

On January 6, rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to prevent the certification of President Biden's 2020 presidential election victory. The election was certified later that day, after the Capitol was cleared of rioters.

Investigations into the events surrounding the Capitol riot are still ongoing, including the bipartisan House of Representatives' Select Committee, which is expected to resume hearings in the fall.

President Biden will speak at Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia on Thursday and his remarks will focus on "the continued battle for the soul of the nation," according to a White House official cited by NBC News.

The president will reportedly discuss democracy and will say that Americans' right are at risk.

"He will make clear who is fighting for those rights, fighting for those freedoms, and fighting for our democracy," the White House official said.

Biden warned during a speech in Maryland last week that abortion rights, Social Security and safety from gun violence are all on the ballot in the upcoming midterm elections.

The president also took aim what he described as "MAGA [Make America Great Again] Republicans."

Biden urged people to vote this year to "literally save democracy again" in a likely reference to the so-called "Big Lie"—unfounded claims by former President Trump and his allies that the 2020 election was stolen from him.

Biden is likely to revisit those themes when he addresses the nation on Thursday.