Survey: 3 in 10 Americans identify with Occupy, Tea Party movements
An Occupy Wall Street protest in Los Angeles on Thursday.
November 17th, 2011
03:47 PM ET

Survey: 3 in 10 Americans identify with Occupy, Tea Party movements

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) - Both the Occupy Wall Street and Tea Party movements identify with the values of just under a third of the country, according to a survey released Thursday.

Twenty-nine percent of Americans say the Occupy Wall Street movement shares their values, the same proportion who say Tea Party shares their values, the survey found.

The poll was conducted by Public Religion Research Institute in partnership with the Religion News Service.

“Americans are deeply divided along partisan lines in their evaluations of these movements,” according to the survey report, “although Republicans are significantly more likely to say the Tea Party shares their values than Democrats are to say the Occupy Wall Street movement shares their values.”

Fifty-seven percent of respondents said the the Tea Party does not share their values, compared to a statistically equal 56% of respondents who indicated the same about the Occupy movement.

Fifty-nine percent of Republicans and just 14 percent of Democrats said their values were in line with the Tea Party. When asked about the Occupy movement, 40% of Democrats and 17% of Republicans say their personal values match the values of Occupy Wall Street.

The Occupy movement, which celebrates its two-month anniversary Thursday, is an international protest movement that has called for a number of different reforms, including resolving income inequality and modifying the tax code.

Though respondents said their beliefs didn't align with the Occupy movements, the idea of combating inequality, when asked on its own, did survey positively.

"Majorities of nearly every demographic group - including all major religious groups, age groups and education groups - agree that the government should do more to reduce the gap between the rich and the poor," reads the survey.

Over two-thirds or 67 percent of respondents said the government should do more to reduce the gap between rich and poor. Less than one-third said the government should do less.

Americans are also divided over whether churches and clergy have provided enough moral leadership on the country's economic problems.

Forty-six percent of respondents in a Public Religion Research Institute poll released Thursday indicated that churches have not provided enough leadership during the financial crises. Forty-five percent indicated the opposite.

This division, which is within the survey's plus or minus 3 percent margin or error, was seen throughout almost all religious denominations, including Catholics, evangelical Protestants and mainline Protestants. With 64 percent responding that churches had not done enough, minority Protestants were the only denomination to not show a division within the margin of error.

The survey sampled 1,002 adults from November 10 to the 14 by phone.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Occupy Wall Street • Politics • Polls • Tea Party

soundoff (263 Responses)
  1. Michele

    Working as a social worker/ counselor for many years I have seen God at work in peoples lives. God does help people to find hope and change their lives. Inspired by all I have experienced in social services over the years. I wrote this book to show that God is there fir you and to provide hope to hurting people in times of crisis. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1467933562?ie=UTF8&force-full-site=1

    December 6, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  2. Disgusted

    So, 3 out of 10 Americans are mindless drones.

    November 30, 2011 at 10:56 am |
    • BLOW ME

      so you think its mindless to go against the establishment which makes you conform into drones WORKING 8-5 monday thru friday oh and every other saturday. your an idiot.
      go get a life!

      November 30, 2011 at 11:00 am |
    • josh

      3+3=6 30% identify with the Tea party, 30% identify with the Occupy movement, read the article before you spout.

      December 12, 2011 at 1:39 pm |
  3. Mark Montgomery loves removing his buttPlug then getting his TurdCutter banged.

    Hey ToiletOccupiers...PHUCK YOU!!

    November 25, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
    • John

      This whole article is an example of comparing apples to oranges. The Tea Party "protests" were friendly, civil, and people picked up after themselves...and there were no arrests. The best that liberals could come up with was calling them (shocking!) "racist"; which is white noise coming out of a liberal's mouth. OWS on the other hand ...

      November 30, 2011 at 8:25 am |
  4. Stan

    The same 3 out of 10 Americans are stupid. Really fscking stupid.

    November 19, 2011 at 11:39 am |
  5. Origin of Species is a HOAX

    no, it's hoola and hoolahoop also.

    November 19, 2011 at 11:14 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      No, it isn't.

      November 19, 2011 at 1:18 pm |
  6. lunchbreaker

    The Boston Tea Party is taught in virtually every elementary school curriculum. Basically, people fed up with the tax policy at the time destroyed British property in protest. I wonder were they got the occupiers got the idea to protest tax policy.

    November 18, 2011 at 11:32 am |
    • JohnR

      You think they got the idea to protest the lack of a higher tax rate on high income people from the Boston Tea Party?

      November 18, 2011 at 1:56 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      If tax relief is on their mind then it is hard to understand how 99% of them voted for the current prezeedent. He said he was going to tax the H out of everyone, punish corporations, pass a crazy heal care act .. he has done exactly that. And yes .. it is not free .. so you have to pay for it. And no .. there cannot be jobs when corporations (capitalism) has been banished and there is no help needed. Duh. You got what you wanted people .. don't complain.

      November 18, 2011 at 2:18 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      Obama – Pelosi – Reed – (Rangel and Murtha) all fixed it so your taxes will be about 85% of your income (leaving you movie money). You won't have a job (no companies = no employees) .. you'll be a welfare society (living on food stamps and in government housing); getting government health care (like the VA). That's what everbody wanted, right? If banks were somehow terminated THEN .. no mortgages, no car loans, no credit cards, no student loans. Work it out. If there is no Wall Street and no stocks then there cannot be companies. There cannot be any bonds. So it's cash and carry - together with humongous taxes. Is there another way? Explain.

      November 18, 2011 at 2:31 pm |
    • lunchbreaker

      In response to JohnR, no, I was smoking crack this morning.

      November 18, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • JohnR

      @RTC The Occupy Wall Street people are obsessed with raising the taxes on the top 1%. It's a perfectly reasonable proposal, but if they think that it's going to make a huge difference to the deficit or boost the economy, they're totally nuts. Of course, well, never mind. The 99% the reference and presume to speak for are the 99% who aren't the top 1%. Needless to say, there are a lot of people in that 99% who didn't vote for Obama and who don't support this movement and don't feel it speaks for them.

      November 19, 2011 at 11:32 am |
  7. RightTurnClyde

    This has been a stupid event. But it was backed by ACORN and labor Unions. Definitely socialist; but altogether stupid. The protestors .. camped out .. depend on an affluent society to give them money and privilege in order to do it. they use expensive computers and Ipads and their entire "purpose" is to be mad at capitalism? they could each reduce their annual expenses to something like Nigeria and THEN their rejection of capitalism would be credible. No .. they want MORE and they want to get it by protesting.

    November 18, 2011 at 11:04 am |
  8. Awkward Situations

    God damn hippies!

    November 18, 2011 at 10:41 am |
    • hippypoet

      hey 🙁

      November 18, 2011 at 10:45 am |
    • Awkward Situations

      Cartman got to my computer.

      November 18, 2011 at 11:16 am |
  9. Maltese Falcon

    Furthermore, George Bush is a numbskull.

    November 18, 2011 at 8:28 am |
  10. Maltese Falcon

    Almost the same percentage that supported the American Revolution 230 years ago. Then again, how successful was the Revolution?

    November 18, 2011 at 8:25 am |
  11. Atheist 1#


    November 18, 2011 at 8:23 am |
  12. WOT

    That 3-10 are all rich white bigots, who care less about anyone but themselves!

    November 18, 2011 at 2:08 am |
  13. Reality

    The latest data show that a big portion of the federal income tax burden is shoul¬dered by a small group of the very richest Americans. The wealthiest 1 percent of the population earn 19 per¬cent of the income but pay 37 percent of the income tax. The top 10 percent pay 68 percent of the tab. Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent—those below the median income level—now earn 13 percent of the income but pay just 3 percent of the taxes. These are proportions of the income tax alone and don’t include payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare."


    November 18, 2011 at 12:37 am |
    • Reality

      Prayers are useless, ideas are priceless!!!

      Some ideas for creating new jobs: (What are your ideas?)

      1. Inst-itute an “old-house/condo/apartment” replacement program akin to the successful “automobile gas-guzzler” removal program. Today, there are simply too many houses, condos and apartments in the USA. It is significantly stupid to continue building new ones on new lots. Tear down existing dwellings and rebuild on the same lot thereby keeping the number of housing units stable and providing many jobs in the demolition, building material suppliers and construction industries.

      2. Are big cities needed anymore? Most exist for the service industry and these days most services can be provided from the home via PCs/lap tops. Time to consider big city downsizing with conversion of these outdated areas to parks and entertainment centers. Again, more jobs are created to accomplish this. (planners, architects, landscapers, construction workers and building material suppliers).

      3. Fresh water diversions/capture: It is insane to allow all of our fresh water to flow back into the oceans. Areas like Southwest and Western states have droughts almost every year. Time to build huge canals from rivers like the Mississippi and Missouri to irrigate these parched lands. And it is time to dramatically increase the number of reservoirs in states like Texas, California, Arizona and New Mexico. Again more jobs created for planners, civil engineers, construction workers, building suppliers, farmers and ranchers.

      4. R&E jobs- 1. computer-driven cars, busses, trucks, planes and ships 2. Robotic police, fire and protective aids 3. More efficient birth control methods 4. A pill to temporarily eliminate the se-x drive. 4. A female “Viagra” 5. Continued search for cheap fusion energy.

      5. Space jobs- 1. Moon/Mars stations/mining run by robots. 2. Highly functional, well-equipped, super-fast interstellar probes

      November 18, 2011 at 12:41 am |
    • Sum Help

      Posted: 11/16/2011

      NEW YORK (CNNMoney) – A group of two dozen millionaires stormed Capitol Hill on Wednesday, demanding lawmakers raise their taxes.

      "We want to pay more taxes," said California millionaire Doug Edwards, a former marketing director for Google. "If you're fortunate, and you make more than a million dollars a year, you ought to pay more taxes."

      Read more: http://www.abc2news.com/dpp/news/national/millionaires-ask-congress-to-raise-their-taxes#ixzz1e27nCKgB


      November 18, 2011 at 12:49 am |
    • Ted M.

      -Sum Help-
      I think those millionaires are just making noises. They are obviously a minority group as well. Not much help there.

      November 18, 2011 at 1:59 am |
  14. Reality

    1. The latest data show that a big portion of the federal income tax burden is shoul¬dered by a small group of the very richest Americans. The wealthiest 1 percent of the population earn 19 per¬cent of the income but pay 37 percent of the income tax. The top 10 percent pay 68 percent of the tab. Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent—those below the median income level—now earn 13 percent of the income but pay just 3 percent of the taxes. These are proportions of the income tax alone and don’t include payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare."


    Obviously, we need more rich people to reduce my tax burden !!!

    November 18, 2011 at 12:17 am |
  15. Passive Aggresive

    You all write so many words.Too many words. Make your point, you give me a headache.

    November 18, 2011 at 12:05 am |
    • Fran

      Our country is destroyed. You want it back? You need to fight against corruption. That short enough for you?

      November 18, 2011 at 12:15 am |


      November 18, 2011 at 12:26 am |
    • Origin of Species is a HOAX

      how they would fight when there is not a single atheist in the foxholes?

      November 19, 2011 at 11:09 am |
  16. tallulah13

    I identify with those who wish to use common sense to fix what is broken. I don't identify with people who would do anything for attention except provide answers. I had great hope for both movements, but both were great disappointments.

    November 17, 2011 at 11:25 pm |
    • Fran

      What would you have them do? They are disenfranchised, poor, oppressed, hungry, homeless, unemployed, etc.
      The whole government has been taken over. There is nowhere for them to turn.
      All they can do is complain and hope it might lead to someone with influence to act on their behalf.
      Most of us expected and hoped that Obama would do this. He has failed utterly to do anything but maintain the status quo.
      Now their hope is gone. The bare remnants of hope echo in their attempts to do something. Anything.
      But no one is willing to step forward. The corruption has gone too far. There is almost no one left who can help.
      These protesters now have lots of free time and nothing better to do than to seek a redress of their grievances, yet no one is willing to stand firm against the corruption that has taken over every level of government.
      There is no one left, I guess. Our country is gone. Our democracy is destroyed. All we have left is each other.
      My family doesn't even observe Thanksgiving anymore. Christmas is a threadbare travesty.
      Those protesters will be there in the bitter cold, yet you are one of those who say they don't have anything to say.
      So why are they there? Why are they staying out in the bitter cold?
      Did you think they are all scamming or something?
      I like you, Tallulah13, but I don't know much about you.
      If you know of anyone who can actually help to turn this country around, please do what you can to nudge them in the right direction, okay? Some of those protesters are going to die. They don't need everyone heaping scorn on their efforts no matter how ineffectual they might be.

      November 17, 2011 at 11:42 pm |


      November 18, 2011 at 12:16 am |
    • Ted M.

      You need to look up the word. You don't understand what oppression is otherwise you would not say such a stupid thing.

      November 18, 2011 at 1:51 am |
    • Ted M.

      Good post.

      November 18, 2011 at 1:53 am |
    • Origin of Species is a HOAX

      atheists are oppressed coz they belong in the second class minority.

      November 19, 2011 at 11:12 am |
  17. Iqbal Khan


    November 17, 2011 at 9:10 pm |
  18. John Richardson

    So does that mean about 40% are simple-minded doofusus?

    November 17, 2011 at 8:40 pm |
    • John Richardson

      AAARRRGGGHHH !!! That was supposed to be "are NOT simple-minded doofuses"!!!!!

      November 17, 2011 at 8:41 pm |
    • Fran

      I think you are a doofus.

      November 17, 2011 at 11:20 pm |
    • Ted M.

      -John R-
      When are you going to learn to see past the surface, John?
      You don't have forever to figure shlt out. Take some time and THINK.
      Of course there's plenty of simple-minded folk running around.
      But why is that and what does it mean for everybody?
      How does it all fit together? What data can you rely upon?
      When I run into people like you, I wish I could give you a kick. I really do.
      But maybe you are too busy to take the time to think.
      Being constantly busy and distracted can make you simple-minded about some things.
      If you can't help, please get out of the way.

      November 18, 2011 at 2:10 am |
    • JohnR

      @Fran Who cares? Certainly not me!

      @ Ted M. Oh, how I wish some jerk like you who pounds his chest on the internet would once just try to give me a kick. And I do see past the surface. And that's why I'm deeply unimpressed with either of these movements and their bumper sticker philosophies.

      November 18, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
  19. Ah....wait just a second

    Nobody knows, including themselves what exactly they want. They are the 2011's equivalent of "flower children" who basically have nothing better to do. For the past 20 year years, all the Social Sciences have been warning that without a vibrant middle class, this whole ball of wax falls apart. Viola. Here we go.

    November 17, 2011 at 8:30 pm |


      November 17, 2011 at 10:28 pm |
    • Fran

      You are incorrect. They know what they want. They just can't articulate it very well. These are not flower children. These are people with real grievances. They aren't going around putting flowers in gun barrels. They are getting pepper sprayed for expressing their free speech. They are being assaulted for exercising their Const-itutional rights.
      If you don't understand them then shut up and quit portraying them in a false light. They aren't doing that to you, are they?

      November 17, 2011 at 11:25 pm |
    • tallulah13

      We're halfway to a string quartet!

      November 17, 2011 at 11:25 pm |
    • JohnR

      They are being pepper sprayed for defying court orders to disperse. The right to free assembly doesn't entail the right to "occupy".

      November 18, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
    • MMG

      Those court orders to disperse are illegal and unconstltutional. Dumfuk.

      November 18, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • Origin of Species is a HOAX

      no, t'was hoola and hoolahoop also.

      November 19, 2011 at 11:16 am |
    • Lucky13

      No they are not being pepper sprayed for "expressing their free speech". They are getting pepper sprayed for blocking a path and not listening to a police order.

      November 22, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  20. Occupy Belief Blog

    I am not leaving.

    November 17, 2011 at 8:26 pm |
    • Fran

      I see you pulled yourself back together. Good. I was starting to get worried.

      November 17, 2011 at 10:38 pm |
    • Occupy Belief Blog

      I am a little out of sorts though. Can you spare a dime?

      November 17, 2011 at 10:51 pm |
    • Fran

      I haven't had a dime since the 80s. But if you need money why don't you ask someone in person? Even if I had a dime I couldn't give it to you.
      I think that death-trolley scrambled some of your brainz.

      November 17, 2011 at 11:09 pm |
    • Fran

      Occupy, I am leaving posts here for you in lieu of a dime. I hope it helps you more than a dime.
      If I could reach through the internet, things would be very different. Good luck.

      November 17, 2011 at 11:46 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.