52% Believe Worst of Pandemic Still to Come

Fifty-two percent (52%) of voters now believe the worst of the  pandemic is still to come. That’s down three points from a week ago but up four from two weeks ago. A Scott Rasmussen national survey also found that 27% believe the worst is behind us and 21% are not sure.

Those results suggest that there was an increase in pessimism following news that President Trump tested positive for COVID-19. The pessimism has eased slightly since his recovery, but is still higher than before the president’s diagnosis.

Prior to the president testing positive, our weekly testing found that optimism had been growing steadily for a couple of months.

Thirty-five percent (35%) of men believe the worst is behind us. So do 20% of women.

Forty-six percent (46%) of Republicans now believe the worst is behind us. However, 70% of Democrats and 53% of independents believe the worst is still to come.

The table below highlights selected results showing trends over the past few months.

Worst of Pandemic is Behind Us Worst of Pandemic is Still to Come
Oct. 1-3 24% 55%
Sept. 3-5 29% 49%
Aug. 13-15 20% 59%
July 23-25 15% 63%
June 4-6 29% 42%
April 9-11 16% 60%

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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.


The survey of 1,457 Registered Voters was conducted by Scott Rasmussen using a mixed mode approach from October 8-10, 2020. Field work for the survey was conducted by RMG Research, Inc. Most respondents were contacted online or via text while 198 were contacted using automated phone polling techniques. Certain quotas were applied to the overall sample and lightly weighted by geography, gender, age, race, education, 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.

The margin of error for the full sample is +/- 2.6 percentage points.

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