2016 Killed People's Belief In Santa

Posted: Dec 20, 2016 5:00 PM

This year has been a rough one for many people. It sometimes feels as though the world is in a slump--and according to one polling firm, fewer people now believe in Santa Claus compared to after the last presidential election.

PPP did another Santa poll this year, and it turns out that people belonging to both parties are lacking in some festive suspension of disbelief. In 2012, slightly over half of Americans said they believed in Santa. In 2016? It's down to 31 percent.

When PPP did a poll on the holidays immediately following the 2012 election, 52% of Americans said they believed in Santa Claus, to 45% who said they did not. We've re-upped that question in the wake of this year's election, and belief in Santa Claus has gone all the way down to 31% with non-belief shooting up to 59%. It's not even just Democrats dispirited about the results of the election who have lost their belief in Santa. Republicans (52% in 2012, 34% now), Democrats (55% in 2012, 32% now), and independents (47% in 2012, 27% now) have all had their belief in Santa dashed in pretty similar numbers.

Bah! Humbug.

On other holiday issues, PPP found that most Americans believe that they are on the nice list. Five percent of Clinton voters said they were offended by the phrase "Merry Christmas," and 19 percent of Trump supporters expressed offense at "Happy Holidays." Slightly over a third of Americans believe that there's a "War on Christmas," which is down from 2012.

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