Concerns Over Extremism in the Republican Party

Friday, February 19, 2021

Welcome to NAVIGATOR – a project designed to better understand the American public’s views on issues of the day and help advocates, elected officials, and other interested parties understand the language, imagery, and messaging needed to make and win key policy arguments.

This release features findings from a national online survey of 1,005 registered voters conducted February 11-15, 2021. Additional interviews were conducted among 103 Hispanic voters, 100 African American voters, 100 independents without a partisan lean, and 77 Asian American and Pacific Islander voters.

Key takeaways

  • Americans are currently more worried about threats of domestic terrorism than foreign terrorism.
  • Top concerns on the Republican Party include putting the rich first, its failure to condemn violence including at the Capitol, and being taken over by extreme politicians.
  • Three in five are concerned about the influence of QAnon and Marjorie Taylor Greene on the Republican Party, and call these groups and people “dangerous,” “violent,” and “extreme.”

Americans Most Worried About Domestic Terrorism

Four in five Americans are worried about the threat of domestic terrorism in the United States.

  • Two in five (41%) say they are “very worried” about white nationalist terrorism, including three in five African Americans (61%).

The Vast Majority of Americans Say the Government Has Not Done Enough to Combat Domestic Terrorism

Across partisanship, race, and ethnicity, the majority say the American government has not done enough to combat domestic terrorism – and two in five Americans say the government “definitely has not done enough.” 

As Awareness of QAnon Grows, Most Americans View It Unfavorably

With three in five Americans now familiar with QAnon, more than half of the public says they have an unfavorable view of it. Familiarity has increased by 20 points since August 2020 (from 39% to 59%).

A Majority Say the Government Has Not Done Enough to Stop the Spread of Conspiracy Theories Like QAnon

Democrats, Black Americans, and Hispanic Americans are the groups that most feel the government has not done enough to stop the spread of QAnon, while Republicans are the most likely to say it “should not do anything.”

Greene Viewed Negatively Among Those Familiar With Her, Associated With Conspiracy Theories, QAnon, and Trump

More than half (52%) of Americans have heard “a lot” or “some” about Marjorie Taylor Greene, with 60% of Democrats familiar with her versus just 48% of Republicans.

Three in Five Support Greene’s Committee Removals

When informed of the House vote to remove Marjorie Taylor Greene from her committee positions, the majority of Americans support it; however, Republicans are mixed.

As you may or may not know, freshman Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene has come under fire in recent weeks for things she said in the past to promote conspiracy theories and political violence. As a result, the House voted to remove her from her two committee assignments.

More Than Half Support Expelling Greene From Congress

Beyond committee removal, a majority support expelling Greene from Congress, including two in five independents.

  • Among Republicans, nearly half (46%) oppose her expulsion from Congress.

Concerns on GOP: Wealthy First, Failing to Condemn Violence

Americans are most concerned about Republicans putting the rich and powerful first, failing to condemn the violence at the Capitol, and being increasingly overtaken by extreme politicians.

Americans Are Concerned About Extremism In the Republican Party and the Influence of QAnon and Greene

Seven in ten Americans are concerned about extremism in the Republican Party, and three in five about the influence of groups like QAnon and people like Marjorie Taylor Greene.

Groups Gaining Influence and Control Over Republican Party: “Dangerous,” “Violent,” “Extreme,” and “Cult-Like”

Among those concerned about the influence of groups like QAnon and individuals like Marjorie Taylor Greene on the Republican Party, top descriptors of these groups include “dangerous,” “violent,” “extreme,” and “cult-like.”

Top Concerns About Greene and the Overall GOP Center Around Violence

Among those concerned about QAnon and Greene’s influence, violence in different forms is the top concern.

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