Who are the 18% of Americans who still have a favorable view of Islam?

Nearly half of all Americans think that Islam is a more violent religion than others. ONLY half?

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YouGov‘s latest research shows that 47% of Americans think that Islam is more likely than other religions to encourage violence, while 34% say that Islam is about as likely as other religions to be violent. Older Americans are also far more likely than younger Americans to see Islam as violent. 63% of over-65s say that Islam is more likely than other religions to encourage violence, compared to only 31% of under-30s.

People aged 30-44 are evenly split on the issue, while most (54%) people aged 45-64 tend to see Islam as violent. Republicans (69%) are more than twice as likely as Democrats (32%) to say that Islam is more encouraging of violence than other religions.

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Most Americans (59%) have an unfavorable opinion of Islam, while only 18% say that they have a favorable view of the religion. Republicans (74%) have the most unfavorable view of Islam, while under-30s (32%) have the highest favorable attitudes towards Islam. 

Perceptions vary greatly as to how many Muslims sympathize with ISIS and Al Qaeda. 19% of Americans believe that most Muslims sympathize with the two extremist groups, while at the opposite end of the spectrum 31% believe that less than 10% of Muslims support ISIS and Al-Qaeda. 27% say that between 10% and 50% of Muslims around the world back the two groups.

Democrats are much less likely to say that significant numbers of Muslims support the two groups, with 43% of Democrats estimating that the percentage of Muslims that support ISIS and Al-Qaeda is under 10%, something only 20% of Republicans agree with. 

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A 2014 study from Pew on the attitudes of Muslims around the world shows that support for extremist tactics varies greatly from country to country. 46% of Muslims in the Palestinian Territories think that suicide bombings on civilians in defense of Islam are ‘sometimes’ or ‘often’ necessary, compared to only 3% of Muslims in Pakistan and 5% in Tunisia. 

Full poll results can be found here.

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