CBS News

New poll shows the “racist” charge is not simply policy, but ingrained in the party.

It stands to reason that when a party uses identity politics as its core belief system then the positioning of every issue as being racial will be held by growing numbers of members. Following a week where the charge of racism has been leveled at the president regarding his comments about the select members of Congress, the discussion has been pointed and inflammatory.

While Trump’s tweet-storm was ill-advised (or, more accurately, the result of no advisory on his account) the automatic charge of “racism” has raised some questions. Since he had named no one specific – he alluded to a group – and other aspects of his comments can also be parsed, the question would be, “To what race was he being intolerant?” Is merely having disagreeable words with select members enough to be constituted as “racist”?

For a large number of Democrats that answer is “Yes”. Rassmussen just conducted a poll and the returns showed that a significant segment of party members consider merely being critical is enough to earn the accusation of intolerance.

Voters are closely divided over whether President Trump is a racist, but one-in-three Democrats think it’s racism any time a white politician criticizes a politician of color.

Note the significance here; it is not racially-charged language itself, but any criticism is considered racist. This reflects on what we have been seeing play out in the media for months now since the mid-term election. Anytime policy ideas have been challenged, or some of the many factual errors which these freshman members have discussed are pointed out, there has been a knee-jerk reaction that it is rooted in racism, or sexism – or even both.

Tellingly, within this same poll, it is seen that this tactic is not having the intended effect. It is important to note, the poll was conducted on July 15-16, the days following Trump’s tweets and right in the midst of the media firestorm. Despite that emotionally-charged environment, the number of people who believed Trump to be racist actually dropped in comparison to a previous poll with similar questioning.

In the poll, 47% of respondents believed the President to be racist, which was down 3% from a similar poll held in January. Additionally, more believed the President is not racist (49%) and those believing the use of racism is being done for political gain rose by 6% from that earlier survey. These are the revealing metrics in this poll.

Understand, the respondents were asked about these issues during the Democrat and media effort to establish Trump’s words were deeply racist. Yet while they loudly trying to sell the nation on this notion the result was fewer people believing he is racist, and more people seeing this as a purely political effort to smear him. That is a detail very few in the media are going to be pointing out.