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November 30, 2007
Public Sees Gains in War on Terror
More people now believe we are winning the War on Terror than at any time since the beginning of Bush's second term according to the most recent Rasmussen Poll:
The latest Rasmussen Reports tracking poll finds that 47% of Americans now say the U.S. and its allies are winning the War on Terror (see crosstabs). That’s up from 43% a month ago and reflects is the highest level of confidence measured since December 2005. Over the past 35 months, confidence in the War on Terror has been higher than today only twice, in November and December 2005. The 47% who believe the U.S. and its allies are winning is up significantly from earlier in the year. I find it sigificant that the surge in optimism mirrors the improvement of the situation in Iraq. Could it be that the American people realize the stakes in Iraq a lot higher than those who have dismissed the War in Iraq as a sideshow to the War on Terror?
During the first nine months of 2007, the number believing that the U.S. fell [sic] as low as 33% and reached the 40% level just once. During calendar year 2006, an average of 40% believed the U.S. and its allies were winning. That average was 45% in 2005. In what may be just as significant a finding, only 24% of voters now believe the terrorists are winning. That’s down from 30% a month ago and represents the lowest level of pessimism recorded since 2004.
There is also optimism about Iraq:
The Rasmussen Reports telephone survey also found that 35% of all American voters expect things to get better in Iraq over the next six months while 32% expect the situation to get worse. That’s the first time in years that a plurality has given a positive assessment on the situation in Iraq. The recent increase in optimism is substantial. Just four months ago, in July, 49% of American voters offered a pessimistic assessment of the situation in Iraq and only 23% expected things to get better. There is both a gender gap and partisan gap in those numbers. But significantly more independents see cause for optimism in Iraq than in years previously.
All of this doesn't seem to be helping the president's numbers. Only 29% believe he is doing a "good or excellent job" in handling Iraq. That number is virtually unchanged from last month.