INTEL, DISSEMBLING, AND WAR SUPPORT
Kevin Drum makes some interesting observations on these things, ending with a reasonable question:
knowing what we know now, would the American public have supported this war? That’s starting to look more doubtful every day.
I agree that this is the ultimate question. So far, the answer would appear to be Yes.
Major polls, percent saying they approve of the war as of latest survey:
- FoxNews (July 10): 65%
- ABC News (July 11): 55%
- CBS News (July 11): 55% support war, 54% say worth the cost, but some otherwise mixed results.
(I’ve tried to find the CNN/Gallup and NBC polls on this without success. One would think the polling data would be more prominently featured on their sites.)
And, of course, Bush still has favorable ratings in all the major polls, although certainly not as high as they once were. But given a dull economy and the 50-50 electoral split, these numbers are rather impressive.
CBS News asks and answers a question that Kevin asks in my comments section:
How much difference did it make to the people watching?
At the time, the answer was “not much.”
The CBS News real-time assessment of the State of the Union address, conducted by Knowledge Networks, measuring the moment-by-moment reactions of a nationwide random sample of speech watchers, found almost no movement at all in favorable opinions while the president talked about that component of his argument for taking on Saddam Hussein.
In fact, as CBS News Correspondent Jane Clayson reported in the special report following the State of the Union message, reaction during the president’s discussion of Iraq was “muted.”
As was the case throughout the address, Republicans reacted more favorably than either Democrats or Independents.
The statement about uranium affected none of the three political groups, either favorably or unfavorably.