Apr 5, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Poll: Nearly half of Republicans believe false narratives about Jan. 6 siege

Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump gather in front of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C., the United States on Jan. 6, 2021.

Trump supporters gather in front of the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6, 2021. Photo: Liu Jie/Xinhua via Getty

About half of Republicans surveyed in a recent Reuters/Ipsos poll believed that the deadly Jan. 6 Capitol siege was a "non-violent protest or was the handiwork of left-wing activists trying to 'make Trump look bad,'" Reuters writes.

By the numbers: The poll also indicates that about 60% of Republicans believed former President Trump's unsubstantiated claims that the 2020 election was "stolen" from him. The same number of Republicans believe Trump should run for re-election in 2024.

  • Only three in ten Republicans believe that Trump is partially responsible for the events at the Capitol on Jan. 6, versus 59% of all Americans.
  • About 80% of Republicans in the poll had a favorable opinion of Trump, suggesting strong GOP support for the president, despite the blowback he received in the wake of the deadly riot.

Why it matters: The results underscore the extent to which misrepresentations by former President Trump and some right-wing media figures — about both the election and insurrection — have reverberated among Republicans.

  • “Republicans have their own version of reality,” Vanderbilt University public opinion expert John Geer told Reuters. “It is a huge problem. Democracy requires accountability and accountability requires evidence.”

Go deeper: Pew finds sharp decline in Republican support for making voting easy

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