40% Believe Worst of Pandemic Behind Us; 30% Say It’s Still to Come

Forty percent (40%) of voters now believe the worst of the pandemic is behind us. That’s up two points from two weeks ago. A Scott Rasmussen national survey found that 30% disagree and  believe the worst is yet to come (down four from two weeks ago). Another 30% are not sure.

While just a modest improvement from two weeks ago, the numbers are decidedly more upbeat than they were a month ago. As October began, just 28% believed the worst was behind us while 42% thought it was still to come.

Looking back, optimism peaked in May when 56% believed the worst was behind us. That figure fell to 28% by the end of July.

From mid-July until mid-October, the number expressing a pessimistic view consistently topped the number who were optimistic.

Republicans remain more optimistic than other voters. Forty-eight percent (48%) of GOP voters believe the worst has come and gone. That’s little changed from two weeks ago. Thirty-seven percent of Democrats now believe the worst is behind us (up three points from two weeks ago). So do 37% of Independent voters (up five).

The survey also found that 51% believe those who have been vaccinated should still be required to wear a mask and socially distance from others.

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Note: Neither Scott Rasmussen, ScottRasmussen.com, nor RMG Research, Inc. have any affiliation with Rasmussen Reports. While Scott Rasmussen founded that firm, he left more than seven years ago and has had no involvement since that time.

Question 1:

If someone receives the COVID vaccine, should they still be required to wear a mask and socially distance from other people?

51%    Yes

33%    No

16%    Not sure

Question 2:

Is the worst of the pandemic behind us, or is it still to come?

40%    Behind us

30%    Still to come

30%    Not sure


The survey of 1,200 Registered Voters was conducted online by Scott Rasmussen on October 28-30, 2021. Field work for the survey was conducted by RMG Research, Inc. Certain quotas were applied, and the sample was lightly weighted by geography, gender, age, race, education, internet usage, and political party to reasonably reflect the nation’s population of Registered Voters. Other variables were reviewed to ensure that the final sample is representative of that population.

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