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US opposition to Iraq war hits high

Press TV | May 25, 2007 

Public opposition to the Iraq war has reached record highs in the US, despite congress approval of continued funding, a new poll reveals.

The New York Times/CBS News poll, the latest in a series of recent surveys that have shown an unexpectedly sharp drop in support both for Bush and the war, came as the US Congress voted to fund the war through September 2007, Antiwar news website reported on Friday.

According to the survey, which was conducted May 18-23, more than three out of four citizens (76 percent) now believe the Iraq war is going badly, up from 66 percent just a month ago.

A record 47 percent of respondents said the war was going "very badly."

Perhaps even more important, a majority of 52 percent of Republicans say the war is going at least "somewhat" badly - a whopping 16 percent increase from mid-April and a strong indication that pressure on Republican lawmakers, who have remained remarkably loyal to the White House in a series of Iraq-related votes this spring, to abandon the president is increasing.

"It's the Republican numbers that you have to watch, given the way the White House has governed," said Steven Kull, director of the University of Maryland's Program on International Public Attitudes (PIPA).

Particularly alarming to the White House in the latest poll, as in several others conducted over the past several weeks, is the apparent lack of confidence in the Bush's much-vaunted "surge" strategy.

Only 20 percent of respondents said the surge, which is designed mainly to tamp down violence in Baghdad, was improving the situation in Iraq. Three in four respondents, including a majority of Republicans, said the additional deployments, which are expected to be completed by mid-June, was either having no impact or was making things worse there.

The new survey also found that 61 percent of Americans now believe that invading Iraq was a mistake, as opposed to only 35 percent who believe that it was the right thing to do. The 26-percent spread was the widest found in any major national polling on that question.

CBS Poll: 76% Say War's Going Badly

CBS | May 24, 2007

NEW YORK, As President Bush and Congress hammer out an Iraq war funding bill, a CBS News /New York Times poll shows the number of Americans who say the war is going badly has reached a new high, rising 10 percent this month to 76 percent.

Nearly half of all Americans (47 percent) say the war is going very badly, while just 20 percent say the recent U.S. troop increase is making a positive difference.

Even a majority of Republicans, 52 percent, now say the war is going at least somewhat badly a 16-point increase from the middle of April. Nine in 10 Democrats and eight in 10 Independents agree.

HOW IS THE WAR GOING?

Now
Well
23%
Badly
76%

4/2007
Well
31%
Badly
66%

Although Congress has backed down from attaching a timetable for a U.S. troop withdrawal to the war funding bill, six in 10 Americans would like one. The public also favors setting benchmarks the Iraqi government must meet as a condition for future funding of the war something that Congress will include in the pending legislation.

The poll also finds a record number of Americans say getting involved in Iraq in the first place was a mistake. Only 35 percent say the U.S. did the right thing by invading Iraq, while 61 percent say the U.S. should have stayed out.

DID U.S. DO THE RIGHT THING GOING TO WAR WITH IRAQ?

Now
Right thing
35%
Should have stayed out
61%

In addition, the poll finds Americans are more pessimistic than ever about the overall direction in which the United States is headed. Seventy-two percent, the highest number since the CBS/NYT poll started asking the question in 1983, say the country is on the wrong track, while 24 percent say it's headed in the right direction.

DIRECTION OF THE COUNTRY

Wrong track
72%
Right direction
24%

President Bush's job approval rating in the poll is now at 30 percent, two points above its January low. Sixty-three percent of Americans disapprove of the president's job performance.

Congress fares only a little better, with an approval rating of 36 percent, and disapproval of 52 percent.

BUSH'S JOB APPROVAL RATING


Approve
30%
Disapprove
63%

APPROVAL OF CONGRESS

Approve
36%
Disapprove
52%

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