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Supreme Court approval mired below 2020 level: survey

Supreme Court
Peter Afriyie
The Supreme Court is seen on Thursday, September 8, 2022.

The Supreme Court’s approval rating has remained low in the aftermath of its decision overturning Roe v. Wade, compared to two years ago, according to a new Marquette University Law School poll

The poll found that 40 percent of adults approve of the job the court is doing, while 60 percent disapprove. This is a slight increase from the 38 percent approval that the court had in a Marquette poll in July but is significantly lower than the approval rating in 2020 and early 2021. 

The court’s approval rating stayed at or above 60 percent throughout 2020 and into the first half of 2021. It briefly dropped under majority approval to 49 percent in September 2021 before recovering to up to 54 percent approval into 2022. 

The approval rating dropped to 44 percent in May after the draft majority opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the case in which the court overturned the abortion rights precedent established in Roe, was leaked to the public. 

The poll also found lingering underwater numbers in the amount of confidence that the public has in the court. Only 30 percent of respondents said they have a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the court compared to 37 percent who said so in September 2019. 

While 20 percent said in 2019 that they have very little or no confidence in the court, 36 percent said so in the most recent poll. 

Pollsters also found that the public overwhelmingly opposes the court’s decision to overturn Roe, with 61 percent saying they oppose it and 30 percent saying they support it. 

The survey was conducted from Sept. 7 to 14 among 1,448 adults. The margin of error was 3.4 points. 

Other polls have similarly shown declining confidence in the court since the June decision overturning Roe. Chief Justice John Roberts defended the court earlier this month amid increased doubts about its legitimacy following the Dobbs ruling. 

Tags abortion ruling Approval ratings Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization John Roberts Roe v. Wade United States Supreme Court
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