Latest Winthrop Poll Looks at Race Relations in SC

SC State House

This past year in S.C. has been a tragic, yet historic time. After the shooting of Walter Scott, the murders at Mother Emanuel, and the removal of the Confederate flag from the State House grounds, the discussion of race has increased throughout the state.

The latest Winthrop Poll asked residents how they felt about race relations in South Carolina, and many of the state’s African-Americans believe race is the most important issue facing our country today. Poll Director Scott Huffmon said, “In the past year or so, we have had multiple events that raised conversations about race in South Carolina. The time seemed right to take an accurate measure of where race relations in South Carolina really stand.”

 When asked how they would rate race relations in the United States today, 45% of all respondents said only fair, 34% said poor, and 18% said good. When asked about race relations in S.C., the numbers were slightly better. 43% of all respondents said only fair, 24% said poor, and 29% said good.

After the murders of nine people at Mother Emanuel A.M.E. in Charleston, Governor Nikki Haley and the state legislators voted to remove the Confederate flag from the State House grounds. According to the poll, 57% of whites and 87% of blacks agreed it was the right time for the removal of the flag.

The poll also asked respondents how they viewed the job of several state and national office holders and 94% of blacks surveyed approve of the job that President Barack Obama is doing, while only 28% of whites approve. As for Congress, 80% of all respondents disapprove of the job they are doing, with only a 13% approval rate.

In South Carolina, Governor Haley has a 63% approval rating with whites and a 51% approval rating with blacks.

For all the results, visit The Winthrop Poll.