George Floyd Death Considered Murder by 64% of Blacks, 28% of Whites in America: Poll

Ahead of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin's trial for the death of George Floyd, a new poll by USA Today and Ipsos found that 64 percent of Black people surveyed considered Floyd's death a murder, while only 28 percent of white people believed the same.

According to Ipsos, the poll surveyed 1,165 Americans, 788 of whom were white, while only 178 were Black, on March 1 and 2. In total, the poll found that only 36 percent of Americans believed Floyd's death was murder—far fewer than who believed that it was when the same question was posed in June 2020 shortly after Floyd's May 25 death. The same poll conducted on June 8 and 9, 2020 showed that 60 percent of Americans felt that Floyd's death was murder.

The poll also surveyed trust in the U.S. military, local police and law enforcement, the Black Lives Matter movement, police unions, and President Joe Biden. Those taking part were given the options "Trust a great deal", "Trust a little", "Distrust a little", "Distrust a great deal" and "Don't know" to determine their respective levels of trust for the various groups and president.

The Total Trust Summary shows that trust in Biden and all the organizations except Black Lives Matter have increased since June. For example, trust in local law enforcement increased from 56 percent in June to 69 percent in March, and trust in police unions increased from 40 percent in June to 52 percent in March.

Meanwhile, trust in the Black Lives Matter movement appears to have decreased, in which 60 percent of Americans trusted the organization in June and now only 50 percent do.

Chauvin's trial is expected to begin on March 29. The former Minneapolis police officer facing a charge of second-degree murder and manslaughter, but the Minnesota Court of Appeals has asked District Court Judge Peter Cahill to consider reinstating a third-degree murder charge against Chauvin, which was dismissed in 2020.

Ahead of the trial, Cahill has ordered that face masks and clothing worn during the trial do not display any slogans, logos, images, letters or numbers. Other rules also limit the number of media members that can be present to two, and will also only allow one member of Floyd's family and Chauvin's family each to be in the courtroom at a time.

Following Floyd's death, police reform became an important point of discussion among elected officials. On Wednesday, the House passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which would ban chokeholds, set national policing standards, and more. Some Black Lives Matter activists have criticized the bill saying it is "nowhere near far enough in uprooting racist practices in the police," as Gary McFarlane, a prominent activist, put it.

George Floyd Memorial
Joshua Griffith looks out towards the street as he awaits the start of a candlelight vigil in celebration of George Floyd's 47th birthday on October 14, 2020 in New York City. Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images