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One Way Ted Cruz’s Supporters Are More Like Hillary Clinton’s Than Donald Trump’s

They’re not as racist, according to polling from Reuters.

By Lisa Wade


A man wearing a mask of Donald Trump walks through downtown ahead of the Republican National Convention on July 17, 2016, in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

A set of polls by Reuters/Ipsos — the first done just before Ted Cruz and John Kasich dropped out of the primary race and the second sometime after — suggests that, when it comes to attitudes toward African Americans, Republicans who favored Cruz and (especially) Kasich have more in common with Hillary Clinton supporters than they do Donald Trump supporters.

The first thing to notice is how overwhelmingly common it still is for Americans to believe that “black people in general” are less intelligent, ruder, lazier, and more violent and criminal than whites. Regardless of political affiliation of preferred candidate, at least one-in-five and sometimes more than one-in-three will say so.

But Trump supporters stand out. Clinton and Kasich’s supporters actually have quite similar views. Cruz’s supporters report somewhat more prejudiced views than Kasich’s. But Trump’s supporters are substantially more likely to have negative views of black compared to white people, exceeding the next most prejudiced group by 10 percentage points or more in every category.


These differences are big. We wouldn’t be surprised to see strong attitudinal differences between Democrats and Republicans — partisanship drives a lot of polls — but for the size of the difference between Democrats and Republicans overall to be smaller than the size of the difference between Trump supporters and other Republicans is notable. It suggests that the Republican Party really is divided and that Trump has carved out a space within it by cultivating a very specific appeal.



This story originally appeared on Sociological Images, a Pacific Standard partner site, as “Trump Supporters Substantially More Racist Than Other Republicans.”