August 31, 2017
Nearly half of the country believes the news media poses an equal or greater threat to the nation as white supremacists, according to a new Fox News poll out Wednesday.
The poll found that 47 percent of registered voters think white supremacists are a greater threat, 40 percent think the news media is, and nine percent believe both are equal threats.
There was a significant split among Republican and Democratic voters on the question. Seventy-six percent of Democratic respondents said that white supremacists are the greater threat, while 69 percent of Republicans pointed the finger at the press.
Voters were also asked whether they think President Trump is tougher on the press or white supremacists, and across all demographics people agreed the president is harder on the news media.
The poll came on the heels of President Trump’s much maligned response to violence surrounding a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, in which he blamed both the protesters and counter-protesters for the chaos. Trump also held a rally in Arizona last week in which he ferociously attacked the press.
As for Trump’s response to Charlottesville, 56 percent of voters disapproved of Trump’s response and 52 percent of voters blamed white supremacists for the violence. Notably, however, a majority of voters, 61 percent, think that Confederate statues and monuments should stay up.
While the poll found that voters are generally supportive of how the president is handling the economy and terrorism, there was one rather negative finding for Trump. Fifty-six percent of voters believe Trump is tearing the country apart, while 33 percent say he is bringing it together.
Trump has repeatedly called for national unity. “To all Republicans and Democrats and independents across this nation, I say it is time for us to come together as one united people,” he said following his electoral victory.
As for support of the president’s policies, the Fox News poll had one particularly interesting finding. Support for building a southern border wall has fallen from 41 percent in favor in September 2016 to 39 percent in support in August 2017.
The poll, however, found that 45 percent of voters would support Trump following through on his threat to shut down the government in order to pressure lawmakers to fund a border wall.
The poll was conducted over the telephone between August 27 and August 29. It consisted of 1,006 registered voters and has a margin of error of 3 percent.