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A disturbing new survey released Monday found that large pluralities of supporters of both President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden will not accept the outcome of the election if their candidate loses.
The Reuters/Ipsos poll found that 41 percent of Trump supporters would not accept a Biden win; meanwhile, a larger portion of Biden supporters — 43 percent — said they would refuse to accept a Trump victory, no matter how decisive.
A smaller, yet still substantial, percentage of respondents to the Oct. 13-20 survey also said they would “make their displeasure known: 22% of Biden supporters and 16% of Trump supporters said they would engage in street protests or even violence if their preferred candidate loses,” Reuters reported.
Both campaigns are depicting this year’s election as ‘make-or-break’ for America, which could have a lot to do with the survey’s results.
President Trump has been campaigning with the message that he’s the “law and order” candidate and that a Biden victory will lead to a range of new socialist policies that would destroy the job market and crater business development and growth.
The Biden campaign, aided in large part by the establishment media, has been portraying a second Trump term as potentially permanently injurious to the Constitution and governing institutions. They point to the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett who, ironically, is a self-professed constitutional originalist, to be the next Supreme Court justice to substantiate their argument.
Also, Biden surrogates like Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer have ramped up the rhetoric in recent weeks. She seized on the arrest of a half-dozen individuals who allegedly were plotting to kidnap her, blaming a months-old tweet by President Trump in which he wrote “Liberate Michigan!” — a response to her COVID-19 lockdowns.
“This should be a moment for national unity, where we all pull together as Americans to meet this challenge head-on,” Whitmer at an Oct. 8 press conference.
“Instead, our head of state has spent the past seven months denying science, ignoring his own health experts, stoking distrust, fomenting anger, and giving comfort to those who spread fear and hatred and division,” she added without any basis.
She also falsely claimed that he “refused to condemn white supremacists and hate groups like these two Michigan militia groups,” language many Trump supporters feel was gaslighting.
Others are anticipating violence.
In early August, a report by Ben Smith in The New York Times discussed the participation by top Democratic operatives in a “war game” in which they considered a number of possible post-election scenarios that included a threat of secession by states along the entire West Coast in the event of a Trump victory, as well as armed intervention by the U.S. military.
Also, reports note that police in major cities including Washington, D.C., are making preparations for post-election demonstrations and violence.
The Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department, for instance, recently spent $130,000 to buy a supply of tear gas canisters, arguing they may be needed to “effectively deal with illegal rioting,” WUSA9 reported.
“In law enforcement circles, it is widely believed there will be civil unrest after the November election regardless of who wins,” Newsham said. “Now is not the time to restrict the police department’s ability to effectively deal with illegal rioting.”
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