Once a taboo, more and more Americans have a favourable opinion of socialist ideas, with close to half saying they would vote for a socialist presidential candidate, according to Gallup poll.

Socialism is winning fans in the US but the population remains deeply divided over whether the idea is a good thing.

A poll by Gallup showed that 43 percent of Americans believed that it was a good thing while a slight majority - or 51 percent - thought it was bad.

The study also found that 47 percent of respondents would consider voting for a socialist candidate standing for the presidency.

While support for state control of industries, such as technology, was low at around 19 percent, there was considerable support for state involvement in the healthcare sector and education.

The results come amid the rise of left leaning candidates, such as Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ro Khanna, within the Democratic party.

Alongside other progressive members of the House of Representatives, the trio, have brought to the fore issues like universal healthcare and the cost of tuition, as well as social issues, such as police brutality.

Democratic socialist Senator Bernie Sanders is also running in the Democratic primaries for the 2020 presidential election. The representative for Vermont missed out on the 2016 party nomination to Hillary Clinton, who went on to lose the election to incumbent Republican President Donald Trump.

Much of Sanders’ support like Ocasio-Cortez and other progressives, comes from the working class and younger people.

The latter have to face high university tuition fees, student debt, lack of adequate healthcare coverage, and soaring rents in major cities.

Sanders is campaigning on a platform of free college tuition, universal healthcare, and affordable housing.

A Harvard/Harris poll in November 2018, found that 59 percent of Americans between 18 and 24 had a favourable opinion of Sanders.

The US has traditionally been suspicious of socialists - a throwback to its decades long opposition to the USSR and commitment to fighting communism.

Most progressives in the US are fighting for a system closer to European social democracies than an absolute state controlled economy.

Source: TRT World