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Confidence in Science Dropped after the Pandemic, Possibly Due to Partisan Divides

By: Lexi Dai

After the pandemic, both Republican and Democratic parties in the US have shown drops in confidence in medicine through polls and surveys due to partisan divides: “Overall, 39% of U.S. adults said they had “a great deal of confidence” in the scientific community, down from 48% in 2018 and 2021” (Los Angeles Times, 2023).

The Republican party’s trust in government and science greatly decreased while the Democrats’ trust greatly increased. After the Covid-19 pandemic, in 2022, both parties’ confidence plummeted. In fact, “by2022, Republicans’ confidence had fallen to 26%, while Democrats’ has remained about the same as it was before the pandemic, at 42%” (Los Angeles Times, 2023) Overall, the confidence of all Americans before the pandemic was 39% whereas post-pandemic, it dropped to 34%.

Besides science, several people in the U.S. have also grown to distrust the Supreme Court, education, and the press. Sudip Parikh, CEO of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, says that the drops were “disappointing but not surprising.” Parikh also believes that science should be bipartisan. He said, “The causes of Alzheimer’s are the same whether you’re a Republican or a Democrat.”

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