UVA surveyed 2,012 voters — half of whom voted for Trump, the other half for President Joe Biden – in late July in order to better understand the growing split between the Democratic and Republican Parties.
The results show a country at ideological war with itself: More than half of the surveyed Trump voters — approximately 52% — said the "situation is such that I would favor [Blue/Red] states seceding from the union to form their own separate country." Approximately 41% of Biden-voting respondents answered similarly.
Some Republicans have floated proposals to secede from the union, including former Texas GOP chair Allen West. After the Supreme Court rejected a lawsuit spearheaded by the Texas attorney general aimed at overturning the 2020 presidential election results, West said that "perhaps law-abiding states should bond together and form a Union of states that will abide by the constitution."
The survey shows Republicans and Democrats heavily distrust one another, with 80% or more of respondents from each party saying the opposing side presents "a clear and present danger to American democracy." In addition, 80% or more of survey respondents said they're worried they or someone close to them will experience "personal loss or suffering due to the effects" of the opposing party's policies.
An overwhelming number Trump voters in the survey — about 83% — said that society needs to stop the many "radical" and "immoral people trying to ruin things" in the country, further noting that the US needs a "powerful leader in order to destroy the radical and immoral currents" prevalent in society.
Biden voters were less supportive of the same sentiments. For example, 62% of Biden voters at least somewhat agreed that the country needs a "powerful leader in order to destroy the radical and immoral currents" in the country, compared to 82% of Republicans who said the same.
"The divide between Trump and Biden voters is deep, wide, and dangerous," Larry Sabato, the director of UVA's Center for Politics, wrote. "The scope is unprecedented, and it will not be easily fixed."
Even if they can't agree with each other on policy or the direction of the country, around 80% of voters from each side said they preferred democracy over any other style of government.
While it wasn't captured in the survey, both parties also seem to agree on major priorities like modernizing and improving infrastructure, as evidenced by a bipartisan infrastructure bill that passed the Senate in August with 19 GOP votes.
Afromerica's article on secession written in 2016.
Divide the Child: A Peaceful Solution to America's Internal Conflicts
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