State News

Poll: Most Southeasterners Oppose Bush Handling of Iraq War

Posted February 23, 2007 10:25 a.m. EST
Updated February 23, 2007 1:31 p.m. EST

— A majority of people in five Southeastern states are unhappy with President Bush's plan to build up U.S. troop numbers in Iraq, and an increasing number disapprove of the way he is handling the presidency, a new Elon University poll shows.

The survey of 719 residents of Florida, Georgia, Virginia and the Carolinas showed 57 percent of those questioned disapproved or strongly disapproved of increasing the number of U.S. troops in Iraq.

Sixty-four percent disapproved or strongly disapproved of Bush's handling of the war in Iraq, compared to 57 percent in a survey of the same states one year ago, while 31 percent approved or strongly approved of it, down from 39 percent last year.

The survey was conducted February 18-22 by Elon's Institute for Politics and Public Affairs. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.7 percent.

The poll found that 58 percent of respondents disapproved of Bush's job performance, up from 52 percent in the February 2006 survey. It said 38 percent approved or strongly approved of his work, compared to 43 percent last year.

When asked to identify the most important issue facing the country, 45 percent of respondents named the war in Iraq, compared to 26 percent in February 2006. An even 50 percent said a stalemate is the most likely outcome for the United States in Iraq, while 56 percent said the war is not worth fighting.

A majority of respondents - 44 percent - said they trust Congressional Democrats to do a better job handling the situation in Iraq, while 38 percent said they trust President Bush.