Almost a third of Americans could imagine supporting a military coup against their own government, according to a new poll.
The YouGov survey asked, 'Is there any situation in which you could imagine yourself supporting the US military taking over the powers of federal government', 29% said 'yes'. 41% said they could not imagine supporting such an event.
YouGov, which conducts internet polls about “politics, public affairs, products, brands and other topics of general interest”, surveyed 1,000 people online on the issue.
They found that 43% of Republicans would support a military coup in certain instances, while only 20% of Democrats and 29% of independents would.
The overall numbers increased when participants were "asked whether they would hypothetically support the military stepping in to take control from a civilian government which is beginning to violate the constitution".
As many as 43% said yes to this while 29% said no, the Guardian reported on Saturday, citing the survey figures from the UK-based market research firm.
Abraham Wyner, director of the undergraduate programme in statistics at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, said that online polls were "worse than just about any other way you can put together a poll"
It was because they were prone to selection bias, meaning proper randomisation was not achieved and the sample was not representative of the population – since people can choose to participate, he added.
"People who are participating in an online poll are generally attracted to that poll because of some variable, some characteristic which is connected typically to one outcome or the other in that poll," Wyner said.