Poll: Anti-Obama attitudes among whites likely fueled by racial views

This one is for the birthers, the Tea Party advocates, and even for the rest of white America:

USA Today reported on a new psychology study:

Does racial prejudice play a role in questions about Barack Obama's citizenship, a topic much in the news given today's birth certificate news conference? Yes indeed, suggests one recent psychology study.

President Obama on Wednesday released the long-form version of his 1961 birth certificate from Hawaii, a bid to further refute citizenship questions raised most recently by Republican presidential aspirant Donald Trump. "The President believed the distraction over his birth certificate wasn't good for the country," said White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer, in a statement.

Among the findings of the study (perhaps obvious to many):

    While I can't speak to the birther movement specifically, this controversy and others like it are what initially sparked my interest and led to the recent publication in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. President Obama has consistently faced a number of controversies that are, frankly, not based on fact. We thought that his critics' persistence in pursuing these fantasies, such as Obama's birth in a foreign nation or being a Muslim, in the face of facts saying otherwise, might be indirectly rooted in racism.

    Our research investigated whether people who held racial prejudices might be more likely to see Obama as "un-American," presumably because of his race. Indeed, this is what we found. Whites who were prejudiced against Blacks were more likely to see Obama as un-American, and in turn, evaluated Obama as performing more poorly as president. Whites who were not prejudiced, and Blacks in general, did not do so. Additionally and importantly, this relationship was only found with Obama, as prejudiced Whites did not see Vice-President Joe Biden as un-American, despite the fact that Obama and Biden share political party affiliation and agenda.

    The April 27 release of Obama's long-form birth certificate is a situation where President Obama and the White House eventually had to exert effort to quell a controversy that should never have been an issue. Our research indicates that one reason it may have initially become an issue at all has more to do with his race than his place of birth. We find that racial prejudice can, in part, influence evaluations of an elected leader, a phenomenon which is quite "un-American".

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