WASHINGTON (CBS DC) — The vast majority of Americans are highly pessimistic about the values held in the U.S. and the direction that the country is headed.

According to a new Gallup poll of over 1,500 American adults, 72 percent say moral values in the country as a whole are getting worse. Forty-four percent of Americans rated the state of moral values in the United States as “poor.” This is on par with the 43 percent who said the same last year, but higher than the 38 percent from two years ago.

Self-identifying Republicans are far more likely than Democrats and independents to have negative assessments of moral values. Additionally, Americans who are married, those who are upper- and middle-income, and those who attend church services regularly tend to have more negative views of moral values in the U.S. than their counterparts.

In 2012, Gallup asked Americans to give their views on the most important problem with the state of moral values. Americans were more likely to cite a lack of respect or tolerance for other people than divisive political and social issues such as abortion or same-sex marriage.

Twelve percent of respondents expressed a positive view of moral values, saying they are excellent or good and improving or staying the same, and sixteen percent have mixed views.

Poll results are based on telephone interviews conducted by Gallup from May 2-7, 2013, with a random sample of 1,535 U.S. adults, aged 18 and older.


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