A Gallup poll concluded that Americans’ approval of the U.S. Supreme Court remains at a record low. As of the July 2023 poll, only 40% of Americans expressed approval for the court.

The news: The survey took place on July 3-27, after the court’s most recent term. This year’s rate is tied with September 2021 for the lowest rating on record. However, approval for the court spiked to 43% in July 2022 before falling back to 40% this year.

  • The results show that approval ratings fare low and run roughly along party lines. Gallup stated that this year’s results had the third-largest party gap. 62% of Republicans, 17% of Democrats and 41% of independents said that they approve of the job the court is doing.
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Details: Gallup has been measuring approval rates since 2000. That year the approval rate was 62% and remains the highest rate. On average, 51% of Americans have expressed approval for the court over the last 23 years.

  • The poll found that the party differences have been stark since the Dobbs ruling last year, with Republican support never dropping lower than 60% and Democrat support never surpassing 23%. In four polls before Dobbs, there was “little partisan difference in views of the court,” according to Gallup.
  • The survey established that the opinions of Chief Justice John Roberts have improved and the opinions of Associate Justice Clarence Thomas have worsened. Roberts’ approval rates increased by 14 points since 2015, and Thomas’ ratings dropped 5 points since 2005.

Historical trends: Approval ratings were the most drastic after the Dobbs decision a year ago, with a 61-point difference between parties (74% approval from Republicans, 13% from Democrats. This was followed by a 58-point gap in 2015 when the court ruled in favor of same-sex marriage and Obamacare (Democrats 76% approval, Republicans 18%).

About the survey: The survey included random sample interviews with 1,015 American Adults via telephone interviews. Gallup states that the survey could have a 4% error margin.