PUBLIC OPINION > Don't Talk Politics at Work

Living 2012/09/11 20:00:00
With the presidential election just a couple months away, political conversations are almost unavoidable. But is it ever inappropriate to engage in political discourse? What about the workplace? Is that simply an exercise in free speech and open communication, or a recipe for disaster? We asked the public if it's OK to talk politics at work.

Open political discussion is essential in a democratic country, but about two-thirds of people think that bringing it into the workplace is a bad idea. Most people agree that there's a fine line between a discussion and an argument, but with a topic as volatile as politics, a calm discussion could very quickly turn sour. Some spoke from experience. It could turn out fine, but it's usually not worth the risk.

Mind the Moderates

Conservatives and liberals voted similarly on this issue -- 40% and 37% were OK with workplace discussions, respectively -- but voters who fell in the middle were less than enthused. Only 22% of moderates think it's OK to discuss politics at work. It would follow that people who call themselves moderates are less confrontational.

Men Might Go for It

Men were a bit more likely to condone politics in the workplace. Since men are typically a little more competitive, it would make sense that they're more eager or willing to get into it over healthcare and the economy, but ultimately it was only an 11% difference -- about a third of men, compared to about a quarter of women.

Age Is Not an Issue

There weren't actually that many other demographics that seemed to correlate with response. In fact, the age group most willing to talk politics at work (45-54) was only a few years older than the age group least willing to talk politics at work (35-44). Teens were more willing than most, though not by much.

If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit our poll about politics in the workplace. We'd love to hear from you!
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  • True~Male fitz 2012/09/18 12:43:10 (edited)
    Blah Blah blah " --what point is that ?
  • Christo... Steveth... 2012/09/13 02:42:00
    Christopher Kirchen
    Apparently commie=someone who doesn't let true-male say whatever he wants.
  • Steveth... Christo... 2012/09/13 04:00:57
    Where do you fools come from? Did you all come on the same bus? Ha ha ha
  • True~Male Christo... 2012/09/15 13:13:43
    Commie is whoever is against our great country
  • fitz True~Male 2012/09/12 14:05:47
    Just remember, people have freedom to bear arms.
  • Steveth... fitz 2012/09/13 04:03:35
    Where do they get that freedom?
  • True~Male fitz 2012/09/15 13:14:23
    We will protect ourselves from the Government first and foremost
  • thє вluє wαndєrєr 2012/09/12 00:42:46 (edited)
  • True~Male thє вlu... 2012/09/12 04:08:34
    WOw didn't know those places still exisited
  • jay True~Male 2012/09/12 10:35:37
    They don't.....Don't fall for the talk of bigots.
  • True~Male jay 2012/09/15 13:15:24
    Go Republicans --at least they are not bigots
  • thє вlu... True~Male 2012/09/12 12:55:40 (edited)
  • True~Male thє вlu... 2012/09/15 13:16:09
    We need to have republicans occupy this part of the country --the democrats are just too bigotted
  • 098765 thє вlu... 2012/09/12 06:36:09
  • thє вlu... 098765 2012/09/12 13:00:27
  • True~Male thє вlu... 2012/09/15 13:19:01
    At least their is an option to being liberal and carring on in this manner --Go Conservative and become a better human being !! These liberals that posted this are so gross !!
  • True~Male 098765 2012/09/15 13:17:35
    With respect which is much better than what a liberal gets -- Being a conservative is much better than being a liberal in this day and age !!
  • Christo... thє вlu... 2012/09/13 02:43:27
    Christopher Kirchen
    And you're still there? It can't be that bad then, can it?
  • thє вlu... Christo... 2012/09/13 02:54:43
  • Christo... thє вlu... 2012/09/13 03:14:23
    Christopher Kirchen
    "I have my reasons"= I just want to bitch and moan while reaping whatever rewards my current situation may give me.
  • thє вlu... Christo... 2012/09/13 15:59:30 (edited)
  • Christo... Christo... 2012/09/13 16:03:25
    Christopher Kirchen
    LMAO I love how this guy who responded to me is too much of a coward to let me respond to him.
  • jay 2012/09/12 00:30:47
    It depends. If you work for the Federal government, you are going nowhere unless you are a Democrat of the highest Obama-buttlicking order.

    But working for a private business is all business. No politics allowed. Violations shall be rewarded with termination.
  • Eric jay 2012/09/12 02:37:16
    IMHO, the Feds seem rather good about keeping politics private, at least at the lower, operational levels. Most Federal employees are not unionized and have rules restricting political activities of a partisan nature. It is the state, county, city, school district employees who seem to have no rules preventing politics at work and seem to actually encourage political activism, to the detriment of all. Check out the Chicago teachers, AFSCME, SEIU, NEA, etc.
  • True~Male Eric 2012/09/12 04:10:48
    The public Schools have to bow down and take orders from the Unions. They tell us how many people to hire and how many to lay off.
  • True~Male jay 2012/09/12 04:09:19
    In the public schools you can talk liberal trash all day and they love it !!
  • Joo Ho Chung 2012/09/12 00:24:22
    Joo Ho Chung
    Yes you should, but if it becomes to the point where it interrupts what you're doing, then it must stop.
  • izzy penney 2012/09/12 00:14:01
  • NeutronBomb 2012/09/12 00:03:48
    I mean its your own choice to but in my experience its not the best place to do it, very rarely will you change anyones mind, best to leave it outside the workplace as I dont think its generally productive in most workplaces
  • True~Male Neutron... 2012/09/12 04:11:33
  • thє вlu... True~Male 2012/09/12 13:06:02
  • atssgt 2012/09/11 23:56:05
  • MR. 2012/09/11 23:55:56
    THE "TWO TABOO SUBJECTS" ARE WHAT MAKE THE WORLD GO ROUND! *(LET THE GAMES BEGIN!) -"Oh' I thought you meant "money and sex", I'm so sorry?"-
  • Rosalie 2012/09/11 23:49:46
    Never talk about Religion,Sex,or Politics at work!!!!!!!!
  • True~Male Rosalie 2012/09/12 04:12:34
  • thє вlu... True~Male 2012/09/12 13:06:52
  • True~Male thє вlu... 2012/09/15 13:22:19
    entertainer should not either or they face losing fans
  • Osaka 2012/09/11 23:49:00
    We all know what politics does, LOL. It can destroy relationships and may get people fired. I'd say, learn to work with and cherish the people around you. No matter what they believe. You could be like me and have more Liberal friends around my age. I'm just a weird Moderate that may come cross as a Conservative to the far Left.
  • 098765 Osaka 2012/09/12 06:39:24
    or destroy relationships with liberals because they're retards and cherish only relationships with people that matter as human beings.
  • Osaka 098765 2012/09/12 07:02:18 (edited)
    That's horrible advise, the Liberals I know are pretty decent human beings, though there is one I've argued with before. Its just the scourge of the internet I've had issues with. LOL, not everyone is the best mannered.

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2016/02/07 21:44:30

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