The public's disapproval appears rooted in the belief that although unions are good for the people in them, they hurt American businesses and the economy overall. 36 percent of adults say the labor movement has a negative impact on the ability of U.S. businesses to compete overseas, the poll found - only 24 percent say they help.
Most tellingly, the public is split on whether they help increase the availability of "good" jobs: 32 percent said they do and 33 percent saying they have a negative effect.
Businesses also don't fare well in the poll, with just 47 percent of the public holding a favorable view of them. Pew reported this number is also near a historic low.
Pew surveyed 1,385 adult from Feb. 2 to Feb. 7. The poll has a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.