August 4, 2023
Bill Shapard

Oklahomans Optimist About the American Dream

More than 71 percent of likely voting Oklahomans believe that achieving and living the American Dream is still possible today, according to the most recent SoonerPoll Quarterly Poll. While the 71 percent is a large percentage, 30.8 percent strongly agreed but the majority of agreement was only "somewhat agree" at 40.8 percent.

[QUESTION: AGREE or DISAGREE] "Achieving and living the American Dream is still possible today."

  1. Strongly agree 30.8%
  2. Somewhat agree 40.8
  4. Don't know 2.1
  5. Somewhat disagree 16.7
  6. Strongly disagree 9.5

Over 88 percent of Republicans agreed the American Dream was possible today, but amount of agreement dropped to barely half of Democrats to 50.1 percent. Interestingly, only 38.2 percent of Independents believed the American Dream was possible today, with 58.4 percent disagreeing.

There was a large disparity in the poll results when looking at the subsets of ideology as well. Those who identify as very conservative or moderate were overwhelmingly in agreement over the American Dream at 84.1 percent and 79.9 percent respectively. But, only 21.2 percent of those who identify as very liberal agreed, and the 79.1 percent disagreed that the American Dream was possible today.

Agreement was high among the various subsets of educational achievement with those with only a high school education at 88.5 percent, those with some college at 69 percent, and those with only a college degree at 74.7 percent. While those with a post graduate degree agreed with the statement at 61 percent, more than one-in-three with a post graduate degree did not, meaning 34.3 percent of those with a post graduate degree DO NOT believe the American Dream is achievable today.

A disturbing result in the data was that 55 percent of those age 18-24 did not believe the American Dream was possible today. Of that 55 percent, an astounding 49 points were those who strongly disagreed. An even greater amount was found among those age 25-34 with 60.1 percent disagreeing with the statement, but less among those who strongly disagreed which dropped to only 11.8 points of that 60.1 percent.

Put all of this into contrast with those over the age of 65, where not a single respondent strongly disagreed and only 10.8 percent somewhat disagreed.

About the Poll, Oklahoma’s public opinion pollster, asked these questions of Oklahoma likely voters.

The scientific study was conducted from June 1-4, 2023 with 302 likely Oklahoma voters selected at random statewide from SoonerPoll's proprietary online panel. The sample was weighted by education, age, and congressional district in order to reflect the Oklahoma likely voter population for a general election. The weighting was conducted using a 'layered technique.'

The sample reflects the traditional demographical profile of the Oklahoma likely voter with roughly half of respondents identifying as conservative and nearly a third identifying as Moderate. The study has a Margin of Error (MoE) of ±5.65 percent.

A complete description of the methodology can be found here.

Bill Shapard
About the Author

Bill Shapard

Bill is the founder of and ShapardResearch, a full service market research firm based in Oklahoma City. Bill began his career in polling after working on major campaigns for both Republicans and Democrats in Oklahoma from 1996 until founding SoonerPoll in 2004.