According to Pew Research Center, the outlook on national politics is overwhelmingly negative. Peverill Squire, a University of Missouri political science professor, told Missourinet that this is arguably the most divisive time in our nation’s history.

“I don’t think there’s much doubt about that and we can measure it in a variety of different ways,” Squire said. “Again, it’s not the only time and we’ve had previous experience with it, but you really have to go back to the 1890s to see such a stark difference between all of the Democrats and virtually all of the Republicans.”

A Pew Research study found that there’s widespread criticism of the three branches of government, both political parties, as well as political leaders and candidates for office.

“You could look to see how much bipartisanship there is or isn’t, how different the two parties vote and their voters vote,” he said. “What you see right now is stark political differences on policy, on a wide range of social issues. At the same time, they tend to send those same people back to serve them in the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate or state legislatures. Incumbents almost always get reelected. There’s a little bit of schizophrenic behavior on the part of Americans. They grouse about the system. At the same time, they tend to support the people who are running that system.”

The study found positive views of many governmental and political institutions are at historic lows – just 16% of the public say they trust the federal government always or most of the time.

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