Union support wanes

Most Americans’ still support organized labor

Americans may not love labor unions as much as they have throughout history, but more support them than don’t, according to a recent Gallup poll. While down from a historical average of 62 percent over the past 78 years, 54 percent of Americans still say they approve of labor unions while 39 percent say they do not. When the question was first posed in 1936, a whopping 72 percent approved and only 20 percent did not. The greatest gap was in 1957, with 75 percent approval and only 14 disapproval. Support remained high through the 1960s, but has been dipping since, bottoming out in 2009 at 48 percent after the Obama administration came into office, and a fear that unions would become too powerful. Support has stayed just above a majority since.