Poll finds 27% of US Republicans approve of January 6 rioters

At least 1,000 people have already been charged for their roles in the 2021 insurrection at the US Capitol

Richard Barnett, a supporter of US President Donald Trump, sits inside the US Capitol in Washington on January 6, 2021. AFP
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A poll has found that 27 per cent of Republicans approve of the violent actions carried out by Donald Trump supporters during the deadly insurrection at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.

According to an Economist and YouGov poll, 8 per cent of Republicans “strongly approve” and 19 per cent “somewhat approve” of the rioters who attacked the seat of American democracy over debunked claims about voter fraud in the 2020 election.

Mr Trump, the former president who is running again for the White House in 2024, pushed disproved claims that the election had been stolen from him and handed to Democratic challenger Joe Biden. Mr Trump's supporters stormed the US Capitol directly after a fiery speech in which he told them to “fight like hell”.

Seven people, including police officers, died in connection with the January 6 attack.

Fifty-two per cent of Republicans polled either “somewhat” or “strongly” disapproved of the events that day.

Bloomberg reported on Wednesday that 1,000 people have been charged for their roles in the attack, and the US attorney in Washington estimated another 700 to 1,200 charges could come as the federal investigation continues.

US Attorney General Merrick Garland has called it “one of the largest, most complex and most resource-intensive investigations” in the country's history.

Mr Trump has pledged to pardon January 6 participants if he is elected in 2024.

On the other side of the aisle, 19 per cent of Democrats polled shared some level of approval for the rioters.

Sixty-six per cent of Democrats “strongly disapprove” of the attackers, while 27 per cent of Republicans “strongly disapprove”.

Updated: March 16, 2023, 9:27 PM