Where Does America Stands on These Issues?
The Polarization Index examined 10 key issues that contribute to the national degree of discord.
Immigration continues to be the most polarizing topic, driven by right-leaning sources discussing the Biden administration’s immigration policies at the U.S.-Mexico border.
Policing policy continues to be the second most polarizing issue on our list, being primarily driven by high engagement levels with mid-reliable, right-leaning sources.
Over the past six months, polarization of abortion has significantly increased as states like Texas, Idaho, Missouri, Alabama and others propose and/or roll out abortion bans with more stringent measures.
Racial equity was the fourth most polarizing issue in Q1 ’22, with a score of 87.5, being driven by engagement with mid- and high-reliable left-leaning sources as well as mid-reliable right-leaning sources.
LGBTQ+ Rights became the fifth most polarizing issue in the U.S. as concerns about gender education, transgender youth health care services and same-sex affection depicted in media continue to grow.
Gun legislation’s polarization decreased by 2.7 points in the last six months, being driven by engagement with high-reliable left-leaning sources as well as mid-reliable right-leaning sources.
Even though voting integrity was once influenced by shares from mid- and low-reliable right-leaning sources in Q4 ’20, this issue is now being primarily driven by the Left.
COVID-19 vaccines’ polarization score increased in the last year as both Left and Right debated the vaccines’ efficacy amid the rapid spread of the Delta and Omicron variants, and growing concerns about the rollout of vaccine mandates in the country.
Jan. 6 Capitol Attack
Disagreement over the Jan. 6 Capitol Attack joined the list of the most polarizing topics in Q1 ’22 as Congress investigated former President Trump and his allies for their roles in the attack.
Polarization around climate change has continued to decline by 4.2 points in the last six months. More than half of all shares related to climate change derived from high-reliable left-leaning sources.
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