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Americans becoming more politically active: poll

Demonstrators at the "March for Our Lives" rally for gun control in Washington
AFP

Washington (AFP) – Driven mainly by opposition to President Donald Trump, Americans have become increasingly politically active over the past two years, according to a poll published on Friday.

One out of five Americans has taken part in a political protest or rally since the beginning of 2016, according to the survey by the Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation.

Nineteen percent of the rally-goers said they had done so for the first time.

Thirty-two percent said they took to the streets in opposition to Trump, while 19 percent said they had marched in support of the president.

Many of those polled said they demonstrated in support of specific issues such as women’s rights, the environment, immigration, abortion or LGBT rights.

Thirty percent of the rally-goers said they approve of the president while 70 percent said they disapprove.

Overall, 40 percent said they approve of the way Trump is handling his job as president while 57 percent said they disapprove.

A “women’s march” held on January 21, 2017, the day after Trump’s inauguration, attracted millions of participants around the country.

Hundreds of thousands attended the “March for Our Lives” rally for gun control held in Washington and other cities on March 24.

The poll found that many of the activists are older and wealthy — 44 percent were aged 50 or older, while 36 percent earned more than $100,000 a year.

Forty-two percent of those who identified as rally-goers were Democrats, 36 percent were independents and 20 percent were Republicans.

Eighty-three percent of the rally-goers said they are certain to vote in the mid-term elections in November for the House of Representatives and one-third of the seats in the Senate.

The poll of 1,850 adults was conducted from January 24 to February 22 and has a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points.

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