Nearly 12% of Americans, or 30 million or more, believe that using violent action to keep President Donald Trump out of the White House is justified.
The surprising revelation comes from the nonprofit Dangers to Democracy, according to a Guardian story.
The study, conducted by the University of Chicago Project of Security & Threats, found that 7% believe violence is justified to prevent President Trump’s prosecution, more than 17% believe it could be used to ensure members of Congress do the right thing, and 12% believe it could be used to “restore the federal right to abortion” and more.
The report noted Trump’s recent arrests by the Joe Biden-supervised Department of Justice for possible First Amendment violations and possession of confidential documents during his presidency.
The key point in that debate is that Joe Biden had classified materials during his time as vice president in his offices and homes, including a garage with inadequate security, and he has not been charged.
“The indictment is radicalizing support for Trump, but that’s not the only source of radicalization,” Robert Pape, a University of Chicago professor who led the research, told the Guardian.
He said the “left” features “growing anger and radicalization.”
Some 18 million people believe the use of force was justifiable in order to return Trump to the presidency, and more than two-thirds believe the 2020 election was rigged. Almost the same number believe the Biden administration’s current attacks on Trump are aimed to harm Trump’s campaign in 2024.
Jonathan Turley, a constitutional scholar, and George Washington University law professor who has testified before Congress and represented members of the body in court, says the latest Biden indictment of Trump violates the First Amendment.
“I recently asked, in light of the free speech implications of the second federal Trump indictment, when the price is too high for those who seeking to jail the former president. The chilling answer is found in a new report out of the University of Chicago showing that almost 12 percent of the population, representing 30 million people, believe that violence is warranted to prevent Trump from assuming the presidency. That is almost double the number who believe that violence is warranted to ensure that Trump does become president,” he explained.
Biden ran for office on the promise of bringing people together. But, as Turley warned, the reverse has occurred.
“We have watched as rage has risen in the country. It is often celebrated by one side or the other. I previously discussed how scenes like the recent confrontation on the floor of the Tennessee House perfectly captured our ‘age of rage.’ Protesters filled the capitol building to protest the failure to pass gun-control legislation. Three Democratic state representatives — Justin Jones from Nashville, Justin Pearson from Memphis, and Gloria Johnson of Knoxville — were unwilling to yield to the majority. They disrupted the floor proceedings with a bullhorn and screaming at their colleagues,” he said.
“It is a scene familiar to many of us in academia, where events are regularly canceled by those who shout down others. The three members yelled ‘No action, no peace’ and ‘Power to the people’ as their colleagues objected to their stopping the legislative process. Undeterred, the three refused to allow ‘business as usual’ to continue.”
It’s happened in Washington, too, he noted.
“Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) was shown on videotape screaming about gun control in the Capitol as his colleagues left the floor following a vote. Various Democratic members, including former House Majority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), tried to calm Bowman. However, when Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) asked Bowman to stop yelling, Bowman shouted back: ‘I was screaming before you interrupted me’ — which could go down as the epitaph for our age.”
He said the real danger lies in politicians trying to use that rage.
“Unleashing such rage is difficult to control and often those leading the mob find themselves later pursued by it. This is why, during the French Revolution, the journalist Jacques Mallet Pan warned, ‘Like Saturn, the revolution devours its children.”