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More Americans View Blacks As Racist Than Whites, Hispanics

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Americans consider blacks more likely to be racist than whites and Hispanics in this country.

Thirty-seven percent (37%) of American Adults think most black Americans are racist, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey. Just 15% consider most white Americans racist, while 18% say the same of most Hispanic Americans. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

There is a huge ideological difference on this topic. Among conservative Americans, 49% consider most blacks racist, and only 12% see most whites that way. Among liberal voters, 27% see most white Americans as racist, and 21% say the same about black Americans.

From a partisan perspective, 49% of Republicans see most black Americans as racist, along with 36% of unaffiliated adults and 29% of Democrats.

Among black Americans, 31% think most blacks are racist, while 24% consider most whites racist and 15% view most Hispanics that way.

Among white adults, 10% think most white Americans are racist; 38% believe most blacks are racist, and 17% say most Hispanics are racist.

Overall, just 30% of all Americans now rate race relations in the United States as good or excellent. Fourteen percent (14%) describe them as poor. Twenty-nine percent (29%) think race relations are getting better, while 32% believe they are getting worse. Thirty-five percent (35%) feel they are staying about the same.

These figures reflect more pessimism than was found in April when 42% gave race relations positive marks and 39% said race relations were improving.  However, the April number reflected all-time highs while the current numbers are more consistent with the general attitudes of recent years.

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The survey of 1,000 Adults was conducted on July 1-2, 2013 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

The U.S. Supreme Court recently killed a key portion of the Voting Rights Act as unconstitutional and sent a lawsuit challenging the University of Texas’ use of race as a factor in admissions back to the appellate court level for further review. Most Americans believe affirmative action admissions policies discriminate against whites, as the lawsuit argues, and think it’s better for colleges and universities to accept the most qualified students.

This is consistent with public resistance to all special preferences. Only 30% think it’s fair for colleges and universities to give preferences to children of large donors.  Just 38% think it is fair for the children of previous students to have a special advantage in the admissions process.

Following those decisions and a big ruling on same-sex marriage, public approval of the U.S. Supreme Court has fallen to the lowest level ever recorded in more than nine years of polling.

Blacks are slightly more optimistic about the current state of race relations in American than whites and Hispanics are. But 37% of blacks and 38% of Hispanics believe those relations are getting worse, compared to 29% of whites.

Liberals are more confident than conservatives that race relations are getting better.

Forty-five percent (45%) of voters believe the U.S. justice system is fair to most Americans, but just 34% think it is fair to poor Americans. Forty-five percent (45%) consider the justice system fair to black and Hispanic Americans.

Most voters continue to believe the U.S. economy is fair to women, blacks and Hispanics but are now evenly divided when asked if it’s fair to lower-income Americans. However, they still think all four groups are treated better than the middle class.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

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