There Was No Ferguson Backlash Among Republicans

Pew Research released a survey on our growing partisan divide a few weeks ago, but I missed it while I was on vacation. Generally speaking, it says mostly what you’d expect: liberals and conservatives have both moved substantially since 2008 and are now farther apart than ever. But it’s not all bad news, and I feel like I need to put up a little ray of sunshine after my last post. So here it is. This is what happened after the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson three years ago:

After Ferguson, everyone, Democrats and Republicans alike, became more likely to believe that we need to do more to address racial inequities. What’s more, after a bit of a decline, it spiked back up among Republicans after a few months of Trump.

That’s good news. Far from causing a racial backlash, Ferguson helped change minds on both sides of the aisle. And it doesn’t appear that Trump did any lasting damage to the gains among Republicans. The gap between Ds and Rs is still large, but at least everyone is moving in the right direction.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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