Majority of Trump supporters don't believe in white privilege – survey

The poll found 74 percent of Trump’s biggest supporters didn’t believe in white privilege, according to a Pew Research Center survey. When broken down along party lines, 89 percent of Republicans approved of Trump’s job performance and didn’t believe in white privilege.

Among Democrats who said whites benefited from white privilege, nearly all 97 percent disapproved of Trump’s performance.

The survey also found the perception of societal advantage was split along racial and partisan lines.

Nine out of 10 African-Americans think whites benefit from societal advantages, while only 46 percent of whites say they benefit “a fair amount” and just 16 percent agreed they benefit a “great deal,”

Views among Hispanics fall between those of white people and black people, with about two-thirds (65 percent) stating white people benefit a great deal or a fair amount from societal privileges that black people do not have.

When polled together a majority of Americans, 56 percent, said white people either benefited “a great deal” or “a fair amount” from advantages that black people do not have, according to the survey. While 43 percent, or 4 in 10 Americans, say people benefit “not too much” or “not at all.”

When it came to the gap between Republicans and Democrats, around eight in 10 Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents (78 percent) said white people benefit from society privilege, whereas 21 percent said they do not benefit or do not benefit too much.

Black Democrats are much more likely than white Democrats to say whites have a “great deal” of advantages, 72 percent versus 32 percent.

The views of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents are nearly the opposite, with 27 percent saying white people benefit a great deal or a fair amount compared with 72 percent who say they do not benefit at all or do not benefit too much.

Pew said the attitudes were largely unchanged from a year ago when the center last asked these questions.  

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© Alex Wong / Getty Images / AFP

In a survey report released in 2016 during the last year of the Obama administration, Pew found four in 10 black people were doubtful the US will ever achieve racial equality, with black people saying they are treated unfairly across different realms of life, from dealing with police, in the courts, to applying for a loan mortgage, in stores and restaurants, and when voting in elections.

In that survey report, black people and whites differed in their opinions about the best approach for improving race relations. Among whites, more than twice as many said that in order to improve race relations, it’s more important to focus on what different racial and ethnic groups share in common (57 percent), unlike 26 percent who said the focus should be on what makes each group unique. Among blacks, similar shares say the focus should be on commonalities, 45 percent, as say it should be on differences, 44 percent.

The survey was conducted between August 8 and 21 among 4,971 adults on Pew’s American Trends Panel. The panel is a nationally representative group of randomly selected American adults recruited from landline and cell phone random digit dial surveys.

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