Nearly six in 10 Americans oppose Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s proposal to bar Muslims from entering the United States, but Republicans are evenly divided, according to a new national NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.
Fifty-seven percent of all adults disagree with Trump’s proposal, versus 25% who agree.
But views are mixed among Republicans: 42% of GOP respondents support Trump’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the U.S., while 36% oppose it.
And among Republican primary voters, it’s 38% support, 39% oppose.
By comparison, 75% of Democrats and 55% of independents disagree with Trump’s proposal.
There’s an urban-rural divide, too: Just 13% of urban respondents and 27% of suburban respondents back Trump’s plan, compared with 41% of rural Americans.
The NBC/WSJ poll also finds a plurality of Americans – 41% – believing that Trump’s general campaign statements are frequently insulting and have the wrong approach.
By contrast, 24% say that Trump’s manner and language might be problematic, but think he’s raising important issues. And 22% say that Trump is telling it like it is and has the right approach.
But among Republicans, only 16% find him insulting; 37% believe he’s raising important issues despite his language; and 40% say he’s telling it like it is.
Finally, the poll shows that Americans, by a 2-to-1 margin, have a favorable opinion of Muslims — 59% positive to 29% negative – which is relatively stable on a question dating back to 2002.
But attitudes among Republicans are more negative: 43% hold a favorable view of Muslims, versus 48% who hold an unfavorable view.
That compared with 75% favorable/14% unfavorable among Democrats, and 59% favorable/25% unfavorable among independents.
The full NBC/WSJ poll was conducted Dec. 6-9 of 1,000 adults (including nearly 400 reached by cell phone), and it has a margin of error of plus-minus 3.1 percentage points.
The question on Trump’s Muslim proposal was asked Dec. 8-9 of 495 respondents, which has a margin of error of plus-minus 4.4 percentage points.
The rest of the poll will be released Sunday and Monday.