Politics, Polls, And The War In Iraqby Doug Mataconis
Unless you’re fully into drinking the Bush Administration Kool-Aid, it’s hard to deny that the Iraq War is becoming more and more untenable by the day:
Americans now view the war in Iraq more negatively than at any time since the war began, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.
Six in 10 Americans surveyed say the United States should have stayed out of Iraq, and more than three in four say that things are going badly there â€” including nearly half who say things are going very badly, the poll found.
Still, the majority of Americans support continuing to finance the war, as long as the Iraqi government meets specific goals.
President Bushâ€™s approval ratings remain near the lowest point of his more than six years in office. Thirty percent of poll respondents approve of the job heâ€™s doing overall, while 63 percent disapprove. Majorities of those polled disapprove of Mr. Bushâ€™s handling of the situation in Iraq, of foreign policy, of immigration, of the economy and of the campaign against terrorism.
A large majority of the public â€” 76 percent, including a majority of Republicans â€” say that the additional American troops sent to Iraq this year by Mr. Bush have either had no impact or are making things worse there. Twenty percent think the troop increase is improving the situation in Iraq.
A majority of Americans continue to support a timetable for withdrawal. Sixty-three percent say the United States should set a date for withdrawing troops from Iraq sometime in 2008.
While the troops remain in Iraq, the overwhelming majority of Americans support continuing to finance the war, though most want to do so with conditions. Thirteen percent want Congress to block all spending on the war. The majority, 69 percent, including 62 percent of Republicans, say Congress should appropriate money for the war, but on the condition that the United States sets benchmarks for progress and that the Iraqi government meets those goals. Fifteen percent of all respondents want Congress to approve war spending without conditions.
Now, does anyone really want to make a bet that a pro-war candidate like Rudy Giuliani really has a chance of winning in November 2008 ?