Americans Support ID Cards “To Catch Terrorists”
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Americans Support ID Cards “To Catch Terrorists”

Center for Public Opinion and Democracy | December 18, 2004

Many adults in the United States support the implementation of national identification cards, according to a poll by Opinion Dynamics released by Fox News. 50 per cent of respondents believe the system would be an advantage in the war on terrorism.

On Dec. 9, the U.S. Senate approved an overhaul of government intelligence operations after an 89-2 vote. The bill calls for national driver’s licence and birth certificate standards. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said the new regulations amount to "the foundation for a de facto national ID card."

In Britain, the Labour government has also strongly campaigned in favour of a national identity card system. Only 29 per cent of respondents in the U.S. consider the idea an invasion of privacy.

Polling Data

Do you think it would be an advantage in the war on terrorism for U.S. citizens to carry national identification cards?

Yes: 50%

No: 35%

Not sure: 15%

Some people oppose having national identification cards because they think such cards would invade their privacy and violate civil rights, while other people support having the cards because they think they would help law enforcement officials catch terrorists. Which is closer to your view?

Invasion of privacy : 29%

Help catch terrorists : 50%

Mixed : 11%

Not sure : 10%

Source: Opinion Dynamics / Fox News
Methodology: Telephone interviews to 900 American registered voters, conducted on Dec. 14 and Dec. 15, 2004. Margin of error is 3 per cent.

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