Poll: Seven Out of Ten Want Redskins to Keep Name

by Andrew Johnson

A clear majority of Americans disagree with President Obama and favor the Washington Redskins keeping their name, according to a new ESPN Outside the Lines poll. The name has been the center of controversy in recent months with opponents calling it racially insensitive and a slur.

The survey finds that 71 percent of respondents want the team to keep the name, while 23 percent oppose it. A similar amount — 68 percent — did not think the name is disrespectful to American Indians.

A majority of conservatives, moderates, and liberals support keeping the name. Eighty-eight percent of conservatives favor the name versus 10 percent who oppose it; among moderates, the figures are 69 percent and 23 percent respectively; and for liberals, it’s 53 percent to 41 percent.

While the name has relatively high levels of support, slightly less than half thought it would eventually be changed. Forty-two percent said the team would likely get a new name at some point, while 54 percent thought it was unlikely it would change.

Fans are apparently more supportive of the team name than NFL players themselves. A separate ESPN survey found 58 percent of players think the team should keep the name, while 42 percent think the name should be changed.