Survey Reveals Public Sector Pension Envy

March 15, 2011 ( - Many Americans believe that those who work for the government get better retirement benefits than those in the private sector, a recent survey shows.

A Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found 71% of likely voters in the United States said they feel government employees get better pensions than private-sector workers. Only 14% disagree, while 15% say they are not sure.

A press release said 78% of those surveyed say they have followed recent news stories about pension plans provided for government employees, with 50% saying they are following very closely.

Nearly a third (32%) indicated they feel it is at least somewhat likely their state would be able to afford all the pension benefits it promised to state workers, while 56% said it isn’t likely their state would be able to fulfill the promise. Those figures include the 8% who say it is very likely and the 16% who say it is not at all likely.

In addition, most respondents indicated they believe government workers have more job security than those in the private sector and government employees don’t work as hard as private sector workers, the survey showed.

The survey of 1,000 likely voters was conducted March 2-3.