It Only Took Three Weeks To Dissolve Racial Unity Over Trayvon

This article is from the archive of our partner .

In late March, there was broad agreement that George Zimmerman should be arrested for killing Trayvon Martin. Now white people and black people are divided over whether Martin was unjustly killed. Meanwhile, the public is growing more united on thinking the Afghanistan war isn't worth fighting. Here's our guide to today's polls and which ones matter.

Findings: While 91 percent of black people think Trayvon Martin was unjustly killed, only 35 percent of white people think that.
Pollster: Reuters/ Ipsos
Methodology: Online poll of 1,289 white Americans, 219 black Americans, and 267 Hispanic Americans from April 9 through April 12. "The precision of the Reuters/Ipsos online poll is measured using a credibility interval… The credibility interval for whites was 3.2 percentage points, for African-Americans it was 7.7 points and for Hispanics was 7 points," Reuters says.
Why it matters: Less than three weeks ago, two-thirds of whites and 86 percent of non-whites thought George Zimmerman should have been arrested for shooting Martin, a CNN poll found. The day after Zimmerman finally was arrested, the public is much more divided. Further, in late March Pew Research Center found the Martin case was the No. 1 story the public was interested in, with interest outpacing news coverage. The Reuters poll shows that's changed, as 68 percent of black people think media coverage of the story has been appropriate while only 24 percent of white people agree.
Caveat: "The one area where all races agree is that they thought no one would ever really know what happened" the night Martin was shot, Reuters reports.

Recommended Reading

Findings: For the first time, a majority of Republicans think the war in Afghanistan is not worth fighting. Over all, 66 percent say it's not worth fighting.
Pollster: The Washington Post/ ABC News
Methodology: Survey of 1,003 people from April 3 to April 8.
Why it matters: The public is increasingly opposed to this war, but that's not reflected in the general election debate. There's even an increasing sense that Afghans are ungrateful: only 31 percent of Republicans think Afghans themselves support having the U.S. in their country, and even fewer Democrats and Republicans think so, at 21 percent.
Caveat: Despite wanting to quit the war, more people approve of Obama's handling of the war than disapprove (48 percent to 43 percent.)

Findings: Obama is beating Romney in New Jersey 49 percent to 40 percent, but if Gov. Chris Christie is Romney's running mate, Obama's gap shrinks, but barely. In that matchup Obama wins 49 to 42 percent. Womp womp.
Pollster: Quinnipiac
Methodology: Survey of 1,607 registered voters from April 3 to April 9.
Why it matters: Christie is frequently talked about as a possible running mate for Romney, but while Christie is popular in his state, he's not popular enough to get people to vote for Romney.
Caveat: It's rare that a vice presidential nominee can deliver a state.


This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.