A CNN/ORC International survey released Thursday indicates that 56% of the public would favor an international agreement that would impose major restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program but not end it completely, with 39% opposed to such an agreement.
“Predictably, there is a partisan divide on that issue, with two-thirds of Democrats favoring a deal along those lines but only 45% of Republicans agreeing with that view,” CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said.
The earlier Post/ABC News poll finds even broader support across party lines, but even here almost half of Republican respondents endorse an interim deal. It doesn’t surprise me that there is this much support for an agreement. Earlier this month, I thought that most Americans would be more inclined to support a deal than to prefer the alternatives offered by hard-liners. We all understand that most members of Congress don’t take their cues on foreign policy from public opinion, but it is a bit remarkable that this majority view has so few vocal representatives in Congress. Among Republicans in Congress, there is unfortunately almost total uniformity on one side of an issue despite the fact that there is a significant Republican constituency in favor of a deal. Hawkish members of Congress from both parties are out of step with public opinion on Iran, but so far there are few signs that any of them are adjusting to this reality.