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One-third of Americans believe a second civil war is likely in the next 5 years: poll

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Lasting change?

Photo by Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis via Getty Images

A new poll released Monday says that as protests and riots continue across the nation, a third of Americans believe the U.S. will see a civil war in the next few years.

What did the poll find?

After the killing of George Floyd, we watched peaceful protests in the streets, protests demanding police accountability and racial reconciliation.

Then we saw many of those movements hijacked by violent anti-police, anti-capitalist radicals who used the passions of the day to foster riots and looting that burned businesses, destroyed lives, and even took over several Seattle blocks to create some sort of anti-American commune.

While things devolved, Rasmussen Reports polled Americans for their take on where the current civil strife could be heading, Confederate symbols, and race relations.

According to the survey, which was taken June 11-14, 34% of us believe the United States will experience a second civil war sometime in the next five years, a three-point jump since 2018. Republicans (40%) and voters unaffiliated with a political party (38%) were far more likely than Democrats (28%) to see a civil war looming. Rasmussen noted that this was a shift since 2018, when Democrats were more worried about a civil war.

What about Confederate symbols and lasting change?

Many Americans watching the protests on TV and seeing updates online are likely asking themselves if any of this will do any good in the long term.

Rasmussen wondered the same thing and asked, "Will the current protests over the killing of an unarmed black man by police in Minneapolis lead to long-term, meaningful racial change in America?" Respondents were fairly evenly split: 37% said the Floyd protests would lead to long-term change; 31% said there would be no lasting change; and 32% weren't sure.

The protests and riots have also led to repeated calls to destroy — and the literal destroying of — Confederate monuments.

With that in mind, Rasmussen asked, "Will the removal of Confederate symbols, names and monuments throughout the country help or hurt race relations? Or will it have no impact?" Nearly four in 10 (39%) said the removal of these symbols will help race relations; while 27% said removal will hurt race relations.

This is a flip from an August 2017 Rasmussen survey, when 28% said it would help and 39% thought it would hurt.

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