KEY POINTS

  • 65% of Americans said they supported the ongoing Black Lives Matter and racial justice protests occurring across the U.S., with 53% saying the protests have helped build support
  • Republicans were found to be the biggest outlying group in the poll, with most saying they did not feel connected to the protests and felt the protests hurt support
  • The poll's results contrast the message promoted by the Trump administration, which has repeatedly tried to vilify the protests and protesters as "violent anarchists" 

A majority of Americans said they supported the various Black Lives Matter and racial justice protests across the U.S., according to the latest Gallup poll.  The protests were ignited by the May 25 death of George Floyd, who died while being restrained by a Minneapolis police officer.

The poll released Tuesday found that 65% of American adults supported the various protests with 50% saying they “feel very/somewhat connected” to the protests. Fifty-three percent said they felt the protests would help public support, as opposed to 34% who said the protests hurt public support and 13% who said it wouldn’t change public opinion.

“Majorities of most subgroups support the protests, with Republicans (22%) a key exception,” the Gallup poll said. “Republicans are also least likely to report feeling connected to the protests, with 14% saying they feel very or somewhat connected to the cause.”

“While small majorities of White Americans and adults aged 50 and older support the protests, fewer in these groups report feeling connected to them.”

Overall, 92 percent of Blacks said the supported the protests and 59 percent of whites did.

Gallup’s latest poll results stand in stark contrast to the Trump administration, which has taken an increasingly hardline stance to ongoing protests. This is best reflected in Portland, Oregon, where President Trump ordered the deployment of federal agents on grounds of protecting federal property in the city.

However, local officials in Oregon  repeatedly have called for their removal, saying their presence has only caused tensions to escalate. Videos have also been shared online of federal agents in unmarked uniforms and vehicles detaining protesters in unknown locations, further intensifying criticism.

Attorney General William Barr has also repeatedly tried to paint all protests as chaotic and violent, something he reiterated during a Tuesday hearing before the House Judiciary Committee.

“In the wake of George Floyd's death violent rioters and anarchists have hijacked legitimate protests to wreak senseless havoc and destruction on innocent victims.”

There were multiple confrontations between protesters and police during the first large-scale protests in June,  but most subsequent protests remained peaceful.

A man holds a picture of George Floyd during a Black Lives Matter protest in New York City A man holds a picture of George Floyd during a Black Lives Matter protest in New York City Photo: GETTY IMAGES / Jeenah Moon