Election 2016

16% of Trump Supporters in South Carolina Willing to Tell Pollsters They Are Openly White Supremacist

Only 14% are not sure if whites are the superior race.

A new Public Policy Poll released today shows a sizable chunk of Donald Trump's support in South Carolina is from white supremacists. When asked by the pollsters if they believe whites are the superior race, 16% of Trump supporters answered "yes." The candidate with the second highest support among white supremacists was Marco Rubio with 9%, followed by Ted Cruz at 7%.

One percent of Ben Carson supporters, despite the fact that Carson is African American, admitted to being white supremacists. 

The poll also shows Trump's lead in South Carolina has remained virtually unchanged since the debate last week. Many pundidts thought Trump "lost" the debate, but like almost every other time experts said Trump's lead would slide, they were proven wrong. Trump maintains a commanding 35% of the vote, with Cruz and Rubio coming in at 18% and 10%, respectively.

The race in South Carolina remains fluid with 29% of voters saying they may change their minds. "Establishment" pick Marco Rubio needs to eat into Trump and Cruz's sizable leads if he's going to maintain his frontrunner status, justified or not. After giving a "victory" speech after finishing third place in Iowa, Rubio wildly underperformed in New Hampshire, emailing a rambling apology to his supporters.

The poll also found that 62% of Trump voters support a national database for Muslims, with the next closest Marco Rubio at 47%. A whopping 56% of Trump supporters don't think the religion of Islam should be legal, with 33% wanting to ban it outright. The next closest was Ted Cruz with 27%.

With his open xenophobia and Muslim-bashing, it's no secret that Trump is tapping into a racist streak in American politics, but this poll provides some concrete evidence that his rhetoric is actually attracting a sizable amount of open racists. We can also assume there is some percentage of South Carolina Republicans who believe whites are superior, but wouldn't admit it to a pollster. 

Adam Johnson is a contributing analyst at FAIR and contributing writer for AlterNet. Follow him on Twitter @AdamJohnsonNYC.

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