Most Florida voters support keeping the state’s “Stand Your Ground” law as is, according to a new poll.
Nearly 65 percent of Floridians say the 2005 law does not need to be changed, according to a Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald/Bay News 9 poll. A state task force considers rewriting the law, according to McClatchy News Service
The “Stand Your Ground” law allows people who believe they are in grave danger to use deadly force to defend themselves. George Zimmerman, 28, is charged with second-degree murder in the Feb. 26 shooting death of Trayvon Martin, a 17-year-old. Zimmerman claims he killed Martin in self-defense after the unarmed Martin attacked him and slammed his head into the sidewalk during a confrontation in a gated community in the central Florida city of Sanford.
Voters are less sure about whether Zimmerman was acting in self-defense when he pulled the trigger, McClatchy reported, with 44 percent believing he was and 40 percent saying he wasn’t.
“The real divide on this is racial, which I think isn’t terribly surprising given the racial tone that this [case] has taken,” Brad Coker of Mason-Dixon Polling & Research told McClatchy. Mason-Dixon is the nonpartisan, Jacksonville-based company that conducted the poll, which surveyed 800 registered Florida voters by phone.
Sixty-nine percent of black voters believe the law should be repealed or modified, compared to just 28 percent of white voters and 34 percent of Hispanics, McClatchy reported.
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