Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump may be hitting new heights in popularity during the GOP primary, but a new survey shows that almost two-thirds of Americans are either concerned or frightened of a potential Trump presidency.
A New York Times/CBS News poll released on Dec. 10 shows Trump with his largest lead yet in the GOP field, commanding 35 percent support among Republican voters. His closest competitor is Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas with 16 percent.
Ben Carson, who had previously been a threat to overtake Trump’s front-runner status, has seen his support cut almost in half since late October, shrinking down to 13 percent. In fourth is Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida with 9 percent, the rest of the candidates squabbling in the single digits.
When speaking to all voters, the survey found that 24 percent we concerned by the idea of a President Trump while 40 percent express outright fear. That’s 64 percent of respondents having anxiety over Trump reaching the White House.
That said, only slightly smaller amount of Americans are scared of a Hillary Clinton presidency. 23 percent of respondents said they were concerned about the former Secretary of State winning while 34 percent were scared. That’s a combined total of 57 percent of Americans not too thrilled with a Clinton White House.
While the results of the New York Times/CBS News poll show Trump rising within the Republican party while making the majority of Americans nervous, one demographic that are definitely afraid of the business mogul gaining the presidency are Muslim Americans.
Following the Dec. 2 San Bernardino, California mass shooting committed by a radicalized couple, Muslims Americans have been reporting more acts of violence and threats.
“It’s just pretty regular now that we’re getting reports of incidents,” Council of American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) representative Ibrahim Hooper tells CNN. “We get so many threats lately.”
Muslim leaders in America fear that Trump’s rhetoric — particularly his calls to ban all Muslims from entering the U.S. — is adding gasoline to the fire.
"It is reckless and simply un-American. Donald Trump sounds more like a leader of a lynch mob than a great nation like ours," says CAIR executive director Nihad Awad, according to Yahoo! News.
Egyptian American Ahmed Shedeed, who is the director of The Islamic Center of Jersey City, is especially dismayed by Trump repeating the debunked claim that Muslims in New Jersey cheered during the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
“He’s giving the right to people to hurt us,” Shedeed said.