Forty-nine percent of people asked in a new Gallup survey say the federal government poses "an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens," and another 19 percent say the federal government is too big in general and puts forth too many laws.

Though this sentiment has been felt by generally the same percentage of Americans for the past five years, fewer than a third of those asked (30 percent) believed it when they were first asked in 2003.

Another 15 percent of those asked worry the federal government violates too many freedoms and civil liberties, while 13 percent see the government as a threat to the Second Amendment.

Ten percent believe the government has too much involvement in people's private lives, while 6 percent view it as a socialist government.

Six percent also worry about losing freedom of speech, and the same percentage of people asked fear the federal government will take away freedom of religion.

The telephone-based survey of 1,025 adults in the U.S. was conducted Sept. 9-13 with a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.