Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Cutting Off Funds: 60% of Americans Disapprove

Looks like the American public is war weary, and would like to see our soldiers safely home; however, 58% of Americans are opposed to a Congressional effort to cut off funding for the troop surge.

When asked: Would you favor or oppose Congress Denying the funding needed to send any additional U.S. troops to Iraq:

Favor 40% Oppose 58% No opinion 2%

In the same poll, only the slimmest majority, 51% even support the non-binding resolution opposing the surge. 46% are opposed.

This debate is far from over. I think support for the Democrats is going to fade because of their efforts on Iraq.

Congressional Democrats have only a 30% approval rating on Iraq - which is admittedly higher than the Republicans' 27% - but the President has a 44% favorable rating, 37% job approval rating, and 42 % of Americans still support Bush's decision to go to war with Iraq.

What does this tell us?
1) On Iraq, Bush is more liked than both the Congressional Republicans and Democrats.
2) A fairly strong majority of Americans are opposed to Congressional efforts to cut war funding.

What can we infer from these two facts? Americans prefer that President Bush, the Commander in Chief, oversee the Iraq war - NOT Congress.

We can also see from these figures that our nation is pretty well evenly divided, even on Iraq (which the media would have you believe that nearly all Americans oppose).

President Bush was asked today in a press conference whether an American can oppose his decision to go to war but still support the troops. (Do you have to support the war to support the war hero) Bush answered: "I think you can be against my decision and support the troops, absolutely. But the proof will be whether or not you provide them the money necessary to do the mission."

This response blew me away. Every time I listen to the President, I come away impressed. He's no dummy. He is basically saying, let the congress talk all they want; talk is free and talk is cheap. If you want to say I made a mistake, say it, but you cannot cut off the funds that support the troops and still "support the troops." He is right. Brilliant. Let them have their hearings and "symbolic" resolutions, that is still patriotic, but forcing our soldiers to abandon their mission, or cutting their funding to leave them in harms way, crosses the line.

Meanwhile, the military is making the case that the surge needs time to work:

Plan needs time to work
“It would be a mistake if expectations are raised so high that people give up on the new strategy prematurely,” Caldwell said. “The enhanced iteration of the Baghdad Security Plan needs to be given time to work.”

I still support Bush. I still support his Iraq War plan. I do not support the Democrats efforts to force us to cut and run.

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