Fiorella Beccaglia Editor-in-Chief
As racial justice protests intensified following the shootings of George Floyd and Jacob Blake, public support for the Black Lives Matter movement has declined, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. Most U.S. adults (55 percent) now express at least some support for the movement, down from 67% in June amid nationwide demonstrations. The share who say they strongly support the movement stands at 29 percent, down from 38 percent three months ago.
The Black Lives Matter movement has been back in the spotlight due to protests in the summer. The new survey findings come as confrontations between protesters and police have escalated in some cities and as President Donald Trump has been more vocal about his criticism of the movement.
The recent decline in support for the Black Lives Matter movement is more notable among White and Hispanic adults. In June, a majority of White adults (60 percent) said they supported the movement at least somewhat. Today, fewer than half (45 percent) express at least some support. The share of Hispanic adults who support the movement has decreased 11 percentage points, from 77 percent in June to 66 percent today. In contrast, support for the movement has remained virtually the same among Black and Asian adults.
Support for the Black Lives Matter movement remains particularly widespread among Black adults. Some 87 percent of Black Americans say they support the movement, similar to the share who said this in June. However, the share of Black adults expressing strong support for the movement has decreased 9 points, from 71 percent to 62 percent.
The partisan divide in support for the Black Lives Matter movement— which was already striking in June— has widened even more. Among Republicans and those who lean to the Republican Party, about two in ten (19 percent) now say they support the movement at least somewhat, down from four in ten in June. The share of Democrats and Democratic leaners who support the movement (88 percent) has not changed considerably.
The partisan gap is similar among White adults. About nine in ten White Democrats (88 percent) express at least some support for the Black Lives Matter movement, compared with 16 percent of White Republicans. And while about half of White Democrats (51 percent) say they strongly support the movement, just 2 percent of White Republicans say the same.