12 issues almost all Americans agree on – and 1 where they couldn’t be further apart

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The 2016 U.S. election was one of the most contentious in recent history, economic inequality continues to deepen, and disagreements on many core issues continue to linger. In other words,America is a deeply divided place.

But there are also many ways in which we remain united. From democratic values central to our republic, to major policy priorities, to an expanding idea of what marriage means, there are many places where large majorities of Americans agree, sometimes surprisingly.

Business Insider took a look at some of the issues, policies, and values that continue to unite us, based on polling results from the Pew Research Center, the General Social Survey run by NORC at the University of Chicago, and Gallup.

Even though we live in a time of serious political division, there’s still broad agreement about our fundamental democratic values.

Business Insider/Skye Gould

Nearly all Americans believe in open and fair elections, our system of checks and balances between the three branches of government, the right to protest, and freedom to express unpopular views.

Even the media – a frequent target of President Trump and his allies as “fake news” – is viewed as very important by nearly 2/3 of Americans, and as somewhat important by another 20%.

One of the biggest divides in the country is economic inequality. But there is a broad consensus around one of the strongest measures that could help fix it.

Business Insider/Skye Gould

Around four out of five Americans consider taxes on the wealthy and corporations as issues that bother them about the federal tax system. Meanwhile, 46% of Americans are just fine with the amount of taxes they pay, and 57% are unconcerned with the poor not paying a fair share.

Even though income tax rates and policies are among the most hotly debated issues among politicians and pundits, Americans broadly share the same views on some of the central components of the tax system.

Immigration was a central issue in the 2016 election, but Americans believe by a margin of almost two-to-one that immigrants make our country stronger.

Business Insider/Skye Gould/Mike Nudelman

Even after a Presidential campaign in whichthe eventual winner usedthe anti-immigrant slogan “build the wall” at his rallies, most Americans see newcomers as a good thing. The most recent iteration of the Pew Research Center’s survey showed62% saying immigrants strengthen America, and just 35% saying they are a burden.

Those numbers have essentially flipped over the last two decades. In 1994, the Pew Research Center found that 63% of Americans viewed immigrants as a “burden” on the country, compared to just 31% who saw them “strengthen” America.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider


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