One-Third of Democrats Think Americans Have ‘Too Much Freedom’ of Speech: Poll

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September 26, 2023

Over a third of Democrats believe that Americans’ speech should be more restricted, according to a recent poll.

A RealClearPolitics survey released Friday shows that 34 percent of Democrats said Americans have "too much freedom" to speak freely, compared with only 14.6 percent of Republicans who said the same. Republicans were over twice as likely as Democrats to say that Americans have "too little freedom," with 46 percent stating this compared with only 22 percent of Democrats.

While 74 percent of Republicans said speech should be legal "under any circumstances," only a slim majority (53 percent) of Democrats agreed.

A majority of Democrats also expressed approval for social media censorship. Fifty-two percent said that the government should be free to censor social media posts to protect national security, compared with only a third of Republicans.

Three-fourths of Democrats said the government "has a responsibility" to limit hate speech and "disinformation" on various platforms, while only 50 percent of Republicans said the same.

The poll is the most recent survey that shows a partisan divide on the issue of free speech. A Pew Research poll released earlier this year showed that 70 percent of Democrats support the U.S. government restricting false information online, against only 39 percent of Republicans.

Support for censorship has also translated into action on college campuses, as there have been several recent high-profile incidents of liberal activists shouting down and disrupting events with conservative speakers.