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The More People Hear About Attacking Syria, The More They Oppose It

Pew’s survey [1] of public opinion on Syria shows a remarkable increase in opposition to an attack just as the administration launched its effort to sell the idea:

Democrats Continue to Oppose Airstrikes

The two most striking things about this result are the speed with which these changes happened, and the fact that Democrats have not really rallied behind Obama on this. It isn’t all that surprising that Democrats are not won over by Obama’s push for attacking Syria, because most of them probably thought that one of the advantages of re-electing Obama was that he would refuse to do this, but partisan loyalty is not working for Obama on Syria nearly as well as it did for Clinton in the late ’90s.

The collapse of support and intensification of opposition among Republicans might be expected when there is a Democratic president in office, but even so the low level of support is remarkable. Just 21% of Republicans support military action against another country, which has to be a record low during the last twenty years. The flight of more independents into the opposition column makes sense, since they are probably least likely to fall in line behind foreign wars fought for dubious goals and typically flee from administrations that appear not to know what they’re doing.

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3 Comments To "The More People Hear About Attacking Syria, The More They Oppose It"

#1 Comment By ArizonaBumblebee On September 11, 2013 @ 6:26 pm

The American people just did this president a big favor: they stopped him (at least temporarily) from making a major blunder. But those us who are not interventionists should not let our guard down. I understand that the usual suspects (Senators Lindsay Graham and John McCain) are already working on another war resolution for Syria if, or when, the Russian initiative fails. Even worse, the French are pushing for a UN resolution on Syria that the Russians and Chinese will never accept. So, we’re not out of the woods yet. We need to remind ourselves that the reason for the Syrian crisis is not Assad’s chemical weapons (despite what the President keeps saying), but Syria’s alliance with Hezbollah and Iran. The neocons certainly haven’t forgotten about this, which is why they may want to scuttle the Russian initiative and continue their push for intervention in Syria.

#2 Comment By Fast Jimmy On September 11, 2013 @ 7:01 pm

From Obama Yesterday:

…when, with modest effort and risk, we can stop children from being gassed to death and thereby make our own children safer over the long run, I believe we should act. That’s what makes America different. That’s what makes us exceptional. With humility, but with resolve, let us never lose sight of that essential truth.

It takes a lot of nerve to lie three times in one sentence- It won’t be very risky, it will work (to stop chem attacks), it will make our children safer- and then finish by saying that it is our ability to do this that makes us ‘exceptional’, but he went ahead and did it.

Not sure why he’s phoning this one in while using such amateurish rhetoric.

#3 Comment By collin On September 11, 2013 @ 7:02 pm

All the liberal pundits (Pierce, Kilgore, Yglesias) I read have been against the war and everyone has relatively the same logic. Any bombing campaign will not do anything and why potentially start a mission creep that will cost our country lots of money.

Big Lefty Jon Stewart fresh from the Middle East is banging the drum against Syria even harder than they did against Iraq. (Even flashing posters: Lee Daniels: The Bomber with pictures of Obama.)