Zogby Poll Finds Nationwide Support for Secession

Second Vermont Republic
Jul. 31, 2008

A new national survey has found surprisingly strong support for secession in the United States.

More than 20 per cent of American adults - one in every five - agrees that “any state or region has the right to peaceably secede from the United States and become an independent republic.” Another similar percentage (18.2 per cent) even says that they “would support a secessionist effort in my state.”

The support for secession held true for every region in the country, though the percentage was slightly higher in the South (25.8) and the East (23.6). The figures were also consistent for every age group, but backing was strongest among younger adults, as high as 39.9 per cent in the 18-24 year category and 23.6 for 25-34 year olds.

Broken down by race, the highest percentage agreeing with the right to secede was among Hispanics (42.6) and African-Americans (39.5), with “other and mixed” accounting for 21.1 per cent and whites 17.1 per cent. On the question of giving support to secessionist efforts, slightly more blacks (32.7 per cent) than Hispanics (31.6) agreed, with 20.2 per cent “other” and 14.5 per cent white.

The currently faltering economy may have played a part in the endorsement of states’ right to secede, with 18.7 per cent of those considering themselves in the “investor class” agreeing, along with 21.2 per cent of non-investors.

To gauge the extent to which support for secession comes from a sense that the country as it is now made up is not working, a separate question was asked about agreement that “the United States’ system is broken and cannot be fixed by traditional two-party politics and elections.” As many as 44.3 per cent agreed strongly or somewhat, as against 29.9 per cent who strongly disagreed.

The poll, taken by the well-known Zogby International pollsters, was conducted among 1209 American adults, contacted July 9-13, 2008 through an omnibus telephone survey nationwide. The margin of error is +/- 2.9 per cent.

The sponsor of the poll was the Middlebury Institute, a think tank "for the study of separatism, secession, and self-determination," based in Cold Spring, NY (MiddleburyInstitute.org).

July 15, 2008

Kirkpatrick Sale
Director, Middlebury Institute

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