As if The Daily Show’s recent focus group with Donald Trump supporters wasn’t scary enough, Public Policy Polling (which periodically does public opinion research for NPI) has now published the results of its latest national poll, which finds that Donald Trump’s popularity among Republican voters continues to grow, and that many of those voters are unintelligent, proto-fascists.
Let’s start with how voters feel about the proposed ban on Muslims entering the United States — which is unconstitutional as well as un-American:
A lot of people thought Donald Trump’s support might come crashing down after he announced support for a ban on Muslims entering the United States last week but that position, as well as a lot of the other things Trump has said recently, is broadly popular within the GOP. 54% support Trump’s proposed Muslim ban, to only 25% who oppose it. Among Trump’s own supporters there’s 82⁄5 support for it. Cruz voters favor it as well, 57⁄25. Rubio voters are pretty evenly divided on it with 39% in favor and 40% opposed, while Bush voters oppose it 21⁄37.
And that’s just the beginning.
46% support a national database of Muslims, to only 37% opposed. Trump voters support this 66⁄15 but voters for the other top candidates are more closely divided- Cruz’s (40/41) and Rubio’s (44/45) narrowly oppose it while Bush’s (36/49) do by a wider spread.
Figures on the right wing have stoked baseless fears for years about a national gun registry, which conspiracy theorists claim is a prerequisite to inevitable gun confiscation. But it seems some of the same people who oppose a gun registry are OK with the idea of the government keeping track of all Muslims. Islamophobia produces some pretty striking double standards.
36% think thousands of Arabs in New Jersey cheered when the World Trade Center collapsed to 35% who don’t think that happened. Supporters of Trump (49/24) and Cruz (47/22) both pretty firmly think that occurred while Bush (37/51) and Rubio (22/46) voters don’t think it did.
There is zero evidence — zero — that the event described above ever took place. It’s not even an urban legend. It’s pure, made-up Islamophobic nonsense.
It’s been said that truth is stranger than fiction. What’s even stranger (and disheartening) is the phenomenon of fiction becoming truth in the eyes of thousands or millions of people who live in a free society who have had access to an education. War is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strength.
Only 28% of GOP primary voters go so far as to think mosques in the United States should be shut down to 47% opposed to that. Trump voters are on an island on that issue- they support it 45⁄28 but backers of Cruz (23/40) and especially Rubio (18/66) and Bush (14/68) are strongly against it.
Only 28% think the First Amendment applies only to them and not any Muslims!?
To put some of these findings about real modern day issues and Trump voters in context, 41% of his voters think Japanese internment was a good thing, to 37% who don’t.
And 41% of his supporters would favor bombing Agrabah to only 9% who are opposed to doing that. Agrabah is the country from Aladdin. Overall 30% of Republican primary voters say they support bombing it to 13% who are opposed. We asked the same question of Democrats, and 36% of them opposed bombing Agrabah to 19% in support.
The word disturbed doesn’t even begin to describe how I felt after hearing about these findings. Ugh. Neo-fascism and ignorance are alive and well in America. There is a lot of work that needs doing to change that… a lot of work indeed.