Poll: Majority see organized labor’s influence declining

Fifty-five percent of Americans think labor unions should have as much or more influence in the future as they do now, but an equal proportion say they don’t expect that will happen, according to a new Gallup poll.

The share of people saying they expect organized labor’s influence to decline is up from 46 percent a year ago, and the highest since Gallup started asking the question in 1999.

A sizable majority think unions benefit unionized workers, and narrow pluralities say they also help private companies and governments that employ union labor. But 49 percent say they “mostly hurt” the U.S. economy generally, and 56 percent say they hurt non-union workers.

(Telephone survey of 1,008 adults conducted Aug. 11-14; MOE +/- 4 percentage points.)