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Poll on Capitol Attack Reveals a 'Huge Problem'

Reuters survey: Half of Republicans say it was mostly peaceful; 80% of Dems say otherwise
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 5, 2021 11:43 AM CDT

(Newser) – It's been almost three months to the day since the Capitol attack, and in its wake, former President Trump and his allies, as well as members of the conservative media, have "publicly painted a picture of the day's events jarringly at odds with reality," as Reuters puts it. That narrative has apparently been heard and absorbed by a good number of Republicans, as evidenced by the latest Reuters/Ipsos survey. In the online poll of just over 1,000 US adults on March 30-31, about half of Republicans surveyed believe the Jan. 6 riot was mostly nonviolent or caused by activist factions on the left "trying to make Trump look bad." That contrasts with the 80% of Democrats and 60% of independents who don't believe the attack was "mostly peaceful."

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Among the GOPers surveyed, 60% also believe Trump's claim that the 2020 election was "stolen" from him, with that same number of Republicans hoping he'll make another presidential run in 2024. That latter group conflicts with the 60% of Americans overall who don't think Trump should run again, per the survey. Still, Trump remains perched at the top of the GOP, with the poll showing that 8 in 10 Republicans continue to see him in a favorable light. "Republicans have their own version of reality," says Vanderbilt University political science professor John Geer. "It is a huge problem. Democracy requires accountability, and accountability requires evidence." Insider cites a Pew poll from early March of 12,000 US adults that also queried respondents about the Capitol attack. In that survey, 54% of Republicans thought the riot was being given too much attention, compared with 8% of Democrats; 28% of Americans overall felt that way. (Read more Capitol riot stories.)

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