Gallup: ‘Too Big’ Is Most Common Description Americans Give Federal Government
Monday, October 11, 2010
By Terence P. Jeffrey

President Barack Obama

President Barack Obama speaks in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Friday, Oct. 8, 2010. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

It was not even close.

When the USA Today/Gallup poll asked 981 Americans "if someone asked you to describe the federal government in one word or phrase,” there was one phrase people used far more frequently than any other: “Too big.”

Thirty-four respondents spontaneously emitted exactly those two words—“too big”--in response to Gallup's inquiry. That does not count the many others who used a slight variation on “too big” or used other terms to express the same basic judgment about the size of the federal government.

Two respondents, for example, used three words, saying, “It’s too big,” instead of just “too big.”

Others said it’s “way too big,” “getting too big,” “getting too big and intrusive,” “too big and too invasive,” “too big and too intrusive,” “too big and too costly,” “dysfunctional and too big,” and “too big, large and inefficient.”
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