As restrictions, closures, and lockdowns ramped up in the spring of 2020, some Americans famously took to the streets to protest what they believed was government overreach. The risk of COVID-19 transmission as the weather cools makes the resurgence of such policies seem more likely. Will a second wave of these policies spark further civil unrest? This question, in turn, raises another: just how prevalent were protests in the spring of 2020?
To provide a data-driven answer, CivicPulse conducted a national survey of over 350 top law enforcement officials in June of 2020, representing agencies in municipal, township, and county governments across the country. Our survey yielded three main insights:
Twelve percent of law enforcement agencies nationwide reported protests against COVID-19 restrictions in the spring of 2020.
Protests were about equally prevalent across both Democrat- and Republican-leaning communities.
Protests were more than three times as likely in Western states than in states in other regions.