CNN Poll: Americans becoming more likely to say diversity enhances culture

cnn poll diversity

In the last few years, Americans have become more likely to say the country’s increasing diversity enriches the nation’s culture, even as perceptions of how others experience racial discrimination have grown more divided by partisanship, according to new findings from a CNN Poll conducted by SSRS.

More than 8 in 10 Americans (81%) say the increasing number of people of many different races, ethnic groups and nationalities in the US is enriching American culture, up from 70% in 2016 survey by CNN and the Kaiser Family Foundation. Solid majorities across party lines feel this way, including 69% of Republicans, 82% of independents and 91% of Democrats.

But at the same time, there’s been an increase in the share who say that racial and ethnic minorities face frequent discrimination, with those figures becoming more polarized along party lines.

Overall, 44% now say African Americans face “a lot” of discrimination in society today, up 8 points since a 2015 survey conducted by CNN and the Kaiser Family Foundation. About 4 in 10 say the same for Hispanic Americans (39%, up from 30%) and 1 in 10 about Asian Americans (11%, up from 5%). Even more, 50%, say immigrants to the US face a lot of discrimination, a question new to this poll.

In every case where there is trend, partisans have moved in opposite directions compared with results from the 2015 poll. Democrats are about 20 points more likely now (72% vs. 53%) to say African Americans face a lot of discrimination in society today, while Republicans are four points less likely to do so (14% vs. 18%). A 23-point gap between Democrats and Republicans on whether Hispanic Americans face a lot of discrimination (42% among Democrats vs. 19% among Republicans) has doubled to a 46-point gap (59% vs. 13%). And a statistically insignificant four-point difference between Democrats and Republicans on the amount of discrimination faced by Asian Americans (6% vs. 2%) has grown to a meaningful 14-point one (15% vs. 1%).
Even when considering discrimination against white Americans, partisans are moving in opposite directions. Among Republicans, 18% say whites face a lot of discrimination in society today, up from 11% in 2015. Among Democrats, the share has held roughly steady (4% now vs. 5% in 2015). (read more)

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