Imagine you’re watching the evening news, kicking back after a long day in the cubicle. Suddenly a breaking news alert flashes across the screen: “Military Coup Overthrows the Government.” What would be your reaction?
While most Americans say they can’t imagine supporting a takeover of the government by the armed forces, or least aren’t sure about it, a substantial number of people say they can imagine supporting the military in such a scenario.
In a new survey by YouGov, 29 percent of respondents said they can imagine a situation in which they would support the military taking control of the federal government – that translates into over 70 million American adults. Forty-one percent of respondents said could not imagine supporting the military taking over the country.
Republicans (43 percent) were more likely to say they can envision a scenario in which they could support a military coup than Democrats (20 percent). Perhaps that difference is related to having a Democratic president who some critics on the right see as overstepping his power.
Regardless of political ideology, one reason people might support a military coup is because they respect officers in the military far more than they do people in Congress. According to the same YouGov survey, almost three-quarters (70 percent) of respondents believe that military officers want what is best for the country, while only 29 percent think the same of members of Congress.
Lawmakers better shape up or they might be shipped out -- literally.
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