Our forthcoming book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. Among other things, it discusses the state of the parties.
The assertion that the 2020 presidential election was rife with voter fraud—a claim Trump has repeated consistently without evidence—is common among evangelical Christian Republicans.[i] But is less widely held among other Republicans. Sixty-nine percent of evangelical Republicans say the claim that there was widespread fraud in the 2020 election is either mostly or completely accurate. In contrast, Republicans who are not evangelical are far less likely to believe this claim is accurate—40 percent say it is mostly or completely accurate.
Given how widely accepted the belief in voter fraud is among evangelical Republicans, it is not surprising that they express far greater skepticism about the fairness of the 2020 election than their co-partisans. Only 27 percent of evangelical Republicans say that Joe Biden’s election win was legitimate, compared to more than half (51 percent) of nonevangelical Republicans. Nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of evangelical Christian Republicans say Biden was not legitimately elected.
More than six in 10 (63 percent) evangelical Christian Republicans say the claim that an unelected group of government officials, known as the “Deep State,” were working against the interests of the Trump administration is mostly or completely accurate. The theory of the Deep State holds significantly less influence among nonevangelical Republicans, only 39 percent of whom say this claim is accurate.
Evangelical Republicans are also far more likely than other Republicans to believe that antifa, an antifascist activist group, was primarily responsible for the attack on the US Capitol. Despite the well-documented evidence showing that Trump supporters broke into the US Capitol, a majority (56 percent) of evangelical Republicans believe the claim that the attack was carried out by antifa. Only about one-third (36 percent) of Republicans who are not evangelical Christian believe it was antifa who attacked the Capitol.
There is a smaller, but still notable gap, between evangelical and nonevangelical Republicans in views about QAnon. Evangelical Christian Republicans are 10 percentage points more likely to believe in the accuracy of the claim that “Donald Trump has been secretly fighting a group of child sex traffickers that include prominent Democrats and Hollywood elites” (29 percent vs. 19 percent, respectively).
A CNBC survey conducted in the days before former President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial finds a large share of Republicans want him to remain head of their party, but a majority of Americans want him out of politics.
The CNBC All-America Economic Survey shows 54% of Americans want Trump “to remove himself from politics entirely.” That was the sentiment of 81% of Democrats and 47% of Independents, but only 26% of Republicans.
When it comes to Republicans, 74% want him to stay active in some way, including 48% who want him to remain head of the Republican Party, 11% who want him to start a third party, and 12% who say he should remain active in politics but not as head of any party.