Oh, let’s not always see the same hands. Emerson asked its sample of 627 national respondents many questions, but the most entertaining has to do with the reach of conspiracy theories regarding the death of Jeffrey Epstein. Only a third of respondents believe the official story, confirmed by the medical examiner, that the Monster of Pedo Island committed suicide. In fact, it’s a virtual dead heat between murder, suicide, and I Dunno:
Voters are split regarding the cause of death of Billionaire convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein: 34% believe he was murdered, 33% believe he committed suicide, and 32% are unsure.
That’s a rousing vote of confidence in the institutions governing the issue. Despite a definitive ruling from the coroner, two-thirds of Americans don’t buy the suicide diagnosis. Is that a partisan issue? Kinda:
Party affiliation has a strong impact on what voters believe on this issue, as 46% of Republicans say it was murder vs. 26% say it was suicide. Among Democrats, 38% say it was suicide as compared to 26%b who believe he was murdered. Of Independents, 31% believe he was murdered, 37% believe he committed suicide, and 33% are unsure.
Emerson’s analysis of a “strong” impact seems overblown. No matter the political affiliation, the majority of each demo seems to be rejecting the official conclusion one way or another. The best that it scores is 38% among Democrats, which is … not a good sign.
For me, I accept that it was a suicide, but it sure seemed like no one much cared if Epstein went through with it. It’s tough to fault people for their skepticism when all of the failures in the system (a) broke in Epstein’s favor for a suicide attempt and (b) against accountability if he succeeded. Every day produces another drip of incompetence that really tests one’s loyalty to Hanlon’s Razor.
That’s not the only fun result from today’s Emerson release. Despite a Monmouth poll of a smaller sample, Joe Biden’s maintaining his polling strength in this series, and it’s Bernie Sanders rather than Elizabeth Warren who’s gaining ground (31/24/15). The most pressing issues for voters in this cycle are the economy, health care, and immigration; among Democratic primary voters, it’s healthcare, the environment, and the economy. Only 38% of all respondents think the Electoral College is unfair.
And finally, on the important issue of QAnon, 73% of respondents … have never heard of it. Only 5% believe in QAnon, but it’s a rare case of bipartisanship on the fringe. Six percent of both Republicans and Democrats believe in QAnon, but only 2% of independents. At the very least, that acts as a bit of a control on the Epstein question — very few of those rejecting the official conclusion fall into a conspiracy-theory paradigm. Or at least the QAnon one.