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Ciruli Associates Poll
Denver Voters Don't Support Columbus Day Protest Goals
Analysis by Floyd Ciruli
The goal of Columbus Day protestors is to stop the celebration. The leader of the protesters, Metro State Professor Glenn Morris, believes the annual arrest of protesters will sway public opinion against the celebration. After several years of high-profile effort, polls show he is wrong. Most voters do not want to ban the celebration nor accept his claim it is racist.
Rather, a survey of Denver voters conducted in October 2007 shows a majority of voters believe Columbus Day “participants have a right to march in the parade” and do not believe the event should be disbanded.
Three-quarters (74%) agree with the statement: “Columbus Day should continue to be celebrated as it is now.” One-half of Denver voters strongly agree with the position. Seventy-two percent reject that the parade is a racist event and should be ended (54% strongly disagree the event is racist and should end).
Although Republicans are 20 to 30 percentage points more supportive of the right to have the Columbus Day celebration and opposed to it being forced to end, neither Democrats nor unaffiliated voters support ending the celebration.
Men and women show no difference on the issue beyond the margin of error.
About one-quarter of minority voters favor ending or changing the event to an “all immigrants” celebration. But a similar percentage oppose those alternatives.
*Four questions correspond to those shown on the previous table. Columns report strong agreement and disagreement with the statement.
The question was included in a survey sponsored by the Better Denver Campaign and conducted Oct. 9 to 10, 2007 by Ciruli Associates. A random sample of 504 Denver voters was interviewed with a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.
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Ciruli Associates is a non-partisan research firm providing polling, election analysis and political commentary to Colorado and national media organizations since 1976.