Nearly two-thirds of Americans say maintaining law and order a 'major concern': Poll


Nearly two-thirds of people are very concerned about the United States’s ability to maintain law and order as the nation faces ongoing racial justice protests, rising violent crime in some cities, and an upcoming presidential election, according to a newly released poll.

Sixty-five percent of adults told Monmouth University pollsters that maintaining law and order across the U.S. is a “major concern,” while 35% described it as a minor problem. Only 8% surveyed between Sept. 3-8 said it is not an issue, the report states.

The figure has dropped in the three months since it spiked to 76% in the days after the death of George Floyd, a black man who died while in the custody of Minneapolis police on May 25. However, it remains higher than 51%, the percentage of people who considered it a big problem five years ago.

But it is not clear whether this will help President Trump, who has dubbed himself the "law and order” president.

Respondents were slightly more optimistic that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden will maintain law and order. Pollsters found 52% were confident in Biden, while 48% said Trump would do the better job.

Most people disapproved of Trump’s response to the Black Lives Matter movement and racial justice protests in cities nationwide over the summer. Just 24% of people thought his actions, including the deployment of federal agents to Seattle and Portland, improved the situation, while 61% said he made it worse.

Republicans and independents who lean Republican were the largest demographic to say keeping the peace and fighting crime are a major problem. However, 60% of non-Republicans who are black agreed that it is a major concern.

Public support for protesters has declined since late June. In early September, just under 25% of the public thought the actions of the protesters were fully justified. In June, 30% thought the actions were fully justified while 40% said they were partially acceptable.

The telephone poll was conducted among 867 adults and had a margin of error of 3.3 percentage points.