USA Today/Suffolk Poll: Ahead of Election Day, 3 of 4 Voters Worry About Violence in a Divided Nation

Americans are increasingly worried about what will happen at the finish line of this year’s tumultuous election, a new USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll finds, including whether the voting will be peaceful and the outcome broadly accepted.

Three of 4 voters express concern about the possibility of violence on Election Day. Only 1 in 4 say they are “very confident” that the nation will have a peaceful transfer of power if Democratic challenger Joe Biden defeats President Donald Trump.

“There’s a very angry undertone out there right now,” said Monica Ponton, 72, of St. Petersburg, Florida. The registered nurse, a Democrat who was called in the survey, has already cast her ballot for Biden. “I’m in my 70s, and I feel like this is one of the scariest times I’ve ever seen for America since possibly (President) Kennedy and the Cuban missile crisis” in 1962.

Biden holds a steady 8-point lead over Trump in the nationwide poll, 52%-44%, taken after the final presidential debate last Thursday. That reflects little change since the survey taken at Labor Day, the launch of the fall campaign season, when the former vice president led by 7 points, 50%-43%.

Democrats hold a double-digit advantage on congressional races. By 49%-39%, those surveyed say they are more likely to vote for an unnamed Democratic House candidate than an unnamed Republican.

The stability in the presidential horse race isn’t reflected in confidence about the vote itself, though, including fears that aren’t traditionally associated with mature democracies. The findings underscore the challenges the eventual winner will face if he wants to unite and reassure an anxious nation.

“I think it’s a bit rocky right now,” Rachel Hage, a stay-at-home mother of three from Boise, Idaho, replied when asked in a follow-up interview about how things were going in the country. A Republican, she plans to go to the polls on Election Day to vote for Trump.

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Source: USA Today