CBS News ballot: Threats to democracy and elections – What are they and who sees them?

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Two-thirds of Americans really feel democracy is threatened. They additionally inform us that having “free and fair” elections is a key a part of democracy. So how do these two issues join? 

For one, most throughout the occasion spectrum need their state’s elections to be run by a nonpartisan or bipartisan entity. But after we ask the place the threats come from, it is a completely different story. Democrats who really feel democracy is beneath menace see hazard from individuals making an attempt to overturn elections and from political violence, as we strategy the anniversary of January 6. Republicans who understand a menace see what they consider is unlawful voting and balloting. That helps clarify some insurance policies they’re every pursuing: Republicans are altering voting guidelines within the states, whereas Democrats in Washington are once more pushing for voting oversight on the federal degree. 

And this, in flip, raises bigger points for a democracy: can it’s sustained beneath both of those suspicions?

Nearly 9 in 10 Democrats see a menace to democracy from makes an attempt to overturn or change election outcomes, and as they extensively disapprove of what occurred on January 6, 9 in 10 see political violence as a menace, too. Republicans, at a fee of virtually eight in 10, closely cite their view that individuals vote or forged ballots illegally. Fewer, however nonetheless a large quantity, additionally say individuals making an attempt to overturn or change elections is a significant menace, and most of that group does not think about President Joe Biden the authentic winner of the 2020 election, and so they suppose there was widespread fraud, suggesting they view that tally itself as having been modified. 

Yet, even within the face of partisan variations over elections, we do discover a widespread need. More than seven in 10  Americans, Republicans and Democrats alike, together with independents, desire their state’s elections be supervised and administered by nonpartisan or a bipartisan set of officers (as is usually the case on the extra native degree). Belief in widespread fraud is expounded to assist for making the voting course of more durable, however that does not imply many are calling for outright partisan management over elections.

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There is a comparatively small portion — roughly one in 5 partisans — who would favor elections be administered by officers who solely come from their very own political occasion. The individuals who maintain this view usually tend to be on the ends of the ideological spectrum inside their occasion – “very liberal” Democrats and “very conservative” Republicans. 

Republicans proceed to consider there was widespread voter fraud

Republican identifiers stand aside from Americans general in believing there was widespread fraud within the election of 2020, echoing the claims of former President Trump and plenty of of their occasion. This has been the case because the election and did not change a lot over 2021.

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It’s additionally that point of yr the place occasion members debate how a lot consideration they need to pay to those issues, and what stances they need to take forward of the midterm elections. Democrats are extensively in settlement. But rank-and-file Republicans are considerably break up, between those that’d need a hypothetical candidate to push again in opposition to the 2020 outcomes, and people to whom it simply would not matter. Half of Republicans need their occasion’s candidates to say there was a number of 2020 election fraud. Many others say it would not matter what a candidate says on this.

Republicans are evenly divided between those that say the 2020 election outcomes ought to have been overturned in Congress, and those that say it would not matter. (It is, although, a mere fifth who need candidates who truly suppose the outcomes ought to have been accepted.)

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Who are the Republicans preferring 2022 candidates saying there was a number of fraud in 2020 and Congress ought to have overturned the outcomes? They are usually older and devour extra conservative media. And they’re particularly probably to make use of the phrases “patriotism” and “defending freedom” to explain the actions of those that compelled their means into the Capitol on January 6.

There is just not a powerful need on both aspect of the political aisle for 2022 candidates who’re outright supportive of what occurred on the Capitol on January 6. For most Republicans, although, whether or not a candidate is supportive or crucial of the occasions of January 6 would not matter. 

There is a comparatively small proportion of the general public, 9%, who would favor such a candidate. They usually tend to approve of the occasions of January 6 and in addition largely use the descriptors “defending freedom” or “patriotism.” About three in 10 on this group really feel that elected officers or candidates may be justified in calling for violence in public speeches, larger than the 14% of the general public general who feels that means.


This CBS News/YouGov survey was carried out with a nationally consultant pattern of two,063 U.S. grownup residents interviewed between December 27-30, 2021.  This pattern was weighted in keeping with gender, age, race, and training primarily based on the U.S. Census American Community Survey, and the U.S. Census Current Population Survey, in addition to 2020 presidential vote. The margin of error is ±2.6 factors.

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