About a third of Americans would consider abolishing or limiting the role of the Supreme Court, a significant increase from 2019, according to an Annenberg School for Communication study.
The survey reported that 34% of Americans would favor eliminating the court if it issued numerous rulings that most Americans disagreed with, up from 20% the last time Annenberg asked this question in 2019.
While 59% of respondents agreed that justices make rulings based on the Constitution rather than their personal or political leanings, more than a third responded that justices are inclined to make rulings that align with the views of the president who nominated them.
About 38% of Americans said that if Congress is at odds with a decision made by the Supreme Court, the legislative body should pass a law prohibiting the court from ruling on that issue or topic — an increase of 28% from when Annenberg asked this question in 2018.
“The willingness of more than 1 in 3 Americans to entertain the idea of abolishing the court or stripping jurisdiction from it is alarming," Director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center Kathleen Hall Jamieson said in a press release.
This year’s survey took place days after the Supreme Court controversially voted 5-4 to leave a highly restrictive Texas abortion law in place. The Texas legislation and the court's decision sparked rallies for abortion rights across the country, including a protest in Philadelphia on Oct. 2 that saw Penn community members participate.
The Annenberg Civics Knowledge Survey, conducted annually by the Annenberg Public Policy Center, asked respondents if they agreed or disagreed with several statements about the Supreme Court. This year's survey fielded responses from Sept. 7 through Sept. 12.
Another recent survey by the Annenberg Public Policy Center found that Americans have become more knowledgeable about their government and freedoms under the First Amendment, but they still hold misunderstandings about the Constitution. 56% of United States adults were able to name all three branches of government, an increase from 51% in 2020.