Donald Trump has convinced tens of millions of Americans that the White House was stolen from him, and a significant number of them are ready to use violence to take back what he lost.
Nearly 70 percent of all Republicans believe the election was stolen from Trump, according to recent polls, but researchers found that 4 percent of Americans, or about 10 million adults, agreed that violent protest was worth the risk -- but that number doubled when they were asked whether violence was justified to return Trump to the presidency, reported The Atlantic.
“This really is a new, politically violent mass movement,” said researcher Robert Pape, who studies political violence. “This is collective political violence.”
Poll respondents are usually reluctant to explicitly endorse violence, but Pape's team found that Trump supporters seemed to prefer harsher language -- and the researchers found 8 percent, or 21 million adults, who they called "committed insurrectionists" who believed violence was justified to remove Joe Biden from the presidency.
“It’s the community’s support that is creating a mantle of legitimacy — a mandate, if you would, that justifies the violence," Pape said. “I’m very concerned it could happen again, because what we’re seeing in our surveys … is 21 million people in the United States who are essentially a mass of kindling or a mass of dry wood that, if married to a spark, could in fact ignite.”