Poll: 58 Percent Say Professional Athletes Should Be Required to Stand During National Anthem

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 24: Jacksonville Jaguar players show their protest during the National Anthem during the NFL International Series match between Baltimore Ravens and Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley Stadium on September 24, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
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A new Reuters/Ipsos poll shows that Americans overwhelmingly support requiring professional athletes to stand during the National Anthem.

Fifty-eight percent say that athletes “should be required to stand” during the National Anthem. Thirty-three percent disagreed, and nine percent of respondents said they didn’t know.

On Tuesday, President Donald Trump proposed that the NFL set a rule forbidding athletes to kneel during the National Anthem.

Despite their support for the National Anthem, a majority of respondents supported allowing athletes to express political views at sporting events. Forty-nine percent supported it, while only 33 percent disagreed. (Seven percent didn’t know.)

The numbers show, however, that a majority of Americans opposed ex-NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s protest during the National Anthem.

Fifty-one percent opposed Kaepernick’s protest, while only 40 percent supported it. (Nine percent said they didn’t know.)

The NFL is also getting poor marks for their handling of the issue.

Forty-three percent of Americans polled in the survey said that they disapproved of the NFL’s handling of the issue while only 36 percent approved.

Despite their opposition to the protests, Americans in the survey were less supportive of President Donald Trump’s decision to weigh in on the topic.

Fifty-three percent said that the president shouldn’t comment on how NFL players conducted themselves during the national anthem; 35 percent were supportive. Fifty-seven percent said that the NFL should not fire athletes who protested during the National Anthem.

The polling sample included roughly 1,6226 adults including 628 Democrats, 583 Republicans, and 222 Independents.

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