A new poll released to day by PPP found that by a nearly two to one margin (54%-28%), the American people are strongly siding with President Obama’s decision not to have sent combat troops back into Iraq.
There are two interesting points in the PPP poll:
-Only 16% of Americans would support sending combat troops to help deal with the crisis in Iraq, compared to 74% who are opposed. There’s a bipartisan consensus on that issue with with Republicans (28/57), Democrats (10/86), and independents (9/86) all strongly opposed to sending combat troops.
-Asked specifically whose vision they agreed with more about having US troops in Iraq between Obama (no troops under any circumstances) and John McCain (troops should have remained in Iraq after 2011), voters side with Obama by a 54/28 spread. In addition to Democrats strongly siding with Obama’s perspective, independents (53/28) and Republicans (49/30) do as well.
People aren’t buying what the Republicans are selling on Iraq. Republicans are blaming the violence on withdrawal of American troops, but 67% of Americans think the conflict is rooted in centuries of internal conflict that was exacerbated by the Bush administration’s decision to invade Iraq. Americans overwhelmingly support providing intelligence to the Iraqi government (56%-30%), and a major international diplomatic effort (52%-30%) to stabilize Iraq.
It turns out that the American people aren’t about to get fooled again by the same lies that got the country into Iraq in the first place. The Republican Party is playing a politically dangerous game by trying to blame President Obama for the wave of violence in Iraq. Instead of blaming Obama, the Republican attacks are reminding the American people that it was the GOP who lied and got the nation into a war of choice.
The American people don’t want combat troops back in Iraq because Iraq belongs to the Iraqis. President Obama did not “lose” Iraq because Iraq never belonged to the United States. It is up to the Iraqis to stabilize their country, and resolve their internal differences. The neo-con war agenda has never been less popular than it is today. The 275 troops that Obama sent to Iraq to secure US facilities and personnel was a smart decision. If the president didn’t send the extra security and something happened, Republicans would be screaming about another Benghazi. However, there is a big difference between sending a few hundred troops to keep Americans secure, and sending hundreds of thousands of troops to do the Iraqi government’s fighting for them.
The Republican era of war is over, and Obama’s decision to not send combat troops back to Iraq is a reminder of why so Americans voted twice for him to be president.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association