American Public Turning Against Iran Nuclear Deal According To New Polls
Recent polling has shown the American public to be highly skeptical, at beast, of the Iran Nuclear Deal. That may not be enough to kill it in Congress, though.
A new poll from Qunnipiac has some bad news for the Obama Administration and the Iran nuclear deal:
A majority of Americans opposes a recently reached international accord lifting sanctions on Iran in exchange for new limits on its nuclear program, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll.
Nearly six in 10 Americans, 57 percent, oppose the nuclear deal, while 28 percent voice support for it in the national poll released Monday, a 2-to-1 margin against the deal.Republicans strongly oppose the deal brokered by the Obama administration, 86 to 3 percent, while Democrats support the top second-term foreign policy agenda item for President Obama, 52 to 32 percent.
A majority of Americans disapproves the way Obama is handling the situation in Iran (56 percent), compared with 35 percent who approve. A majority (58 percent) also thinks the deal makes the world less safe.
The Obama administration has worked to sell the deal reached between the U.S., France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China with Iran to a deeply skeptical American public and Congress.
An ABC/Washington Post poll out July 20 found that 56 percent support the deal and 37 percent oppose it, while a Pew Research Center poll released the following day found that a plurality of Americans familiar with the deal oppose it, 48 to 38 percent.
Another CNN/ORC International poll released late last month found that 52 percent of Americans say Congress should reject the deal, compared to 44 percent who said it should be approved.
In addition to these surveys, a poll released on July 21st from the Pew Research Center showed that a 48% of those surveyed favored the deal while 38% supported it. Digging deeper down, That same poll also showed that 86% of Republicans opposed the deal, while only 14% supported it, and that 36% of Independents support the deal while 49% oppose it. While some of the differences between the polls that have been taken in the month or so since the deal was announced can be explained by differences in the way the questions regarding the deal are asked, it seems fairly obvious that the American public is, at best, dubious about the deal and that Obama Administration has yet to sell them on why this is a good idea. To a large degree, I suppose, this is understandable given the long-standing differences between the United States and Iran and resentments that the American public has because of that. Most of all, though,what each of these polls demonstrate quite clearly, even the polling earlier in July that showed majority support for the deal, is the fact that the public does not trust the Iranian leadership and does not have very much confidence in the President when it comes to foreign policy, something that can be seen in his job approval numbers in that area.
The big question, of course, is what impact polling like this will have on the fate of the deal in Congress. As I’ve said before, it seems clear that both the House and the Senate will be able to put together a majority for a Disapproval Resolution simply because both parties are controlled by the GOP and, even in the Senate, it’s unlikely that many Republicans will vote in favor of the deal. President Obama has already said he would veto this resolution, though, so then it will be up to both the House and the Senate to override the President’s veto. In the House would mean that at least 44 House Democrats would have to join Republicans on an override vote, and that at last 13 Democratic Senators would need to do the same. Realistically, it seems unlikely that that many Democrats would be willing to undercut their President on such an important issue, which is why I’ve said that the odds of Congress actually stopping the Iran deal are still fairly low.
Notwithstanding that, though, so far most prominent Democrats have not taken sides on the matter. The White House did get a boost last week when Michigan Congressman Sander Levin, a strong backer of Israel, endorsed the deal and said he would vote in favor of it, and then again this weekend when Senator Elizabeth Warren did the same. Additionally, the Administration got a boost soon after the deal was announced when Hillary Clinton, who is likely to be the Democratic Presidential nominee, publicly endorsed the deal. The deal also has the support of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who says that Democrats on Capitol Hill will stay united in support of the deal. At the same time, though, most prominent Democrats are still keeping their position on the deal quiet. Perhaps the most prominent person on that list is New York Senator Chuck Schumer, who will become the leader of the House Democratic Caucus in 2017. Schumer has kept his opinions on the deal close to his vest so far, but what he decides to do could have a lot of influence on other Democrats in both chambers of Congress. Today in Politico, Manu Raju and Burgess Evertt report that Schumer appears to be leaning against the deal and that, in an apparent refection of recent polling, the calls and communications with his office regarding the deal are overwhelmingly negative. If Schumer comes out against the deal, it would be a significant blow the Administration that could cause other Democratic members of Congress to oppose the deal as well. It probably still wouldn’t be enough to create the votes necessary to override the President’s veto, but the vote could agonizingly close, especially in the Senate. This would seem to be especially likely if public opinion continues to be as negative as recent polling has indicated.