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Obama Worse Or No Better Than Bush At Protecting Civil Liberties, Poll Finds Amid Drone Debate

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Barack Obama Drones

By Lara Seligman 02/11/13 05:00 AM ET


A majority of voters believe President Obama has been no better than his immediate predecessor, President George W. Bush, when it comes to balancing national security with the protection of civil liberties, according to a new poll for The Hill.

Thirty-seven percent of voters argue that Obama has been worse than Bush while 15 percent say he has been “about the same.”


The results cannot be fully explained as party line responses. More than one in five self-identified Democrats, 21 percent, assert that the Obama administration has not improved upon Bush’s record. So do 23 percent of liberals.


The results are especially striking given the liberal hopes that attended Obama’s election, the opprobrium he heaped upon Bush’s national security policies during the 2008 campaign and his early promise to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay.

The vexing issue of how to balance security with respect for civil liberties has taken center-stage since a document detailing the legal justification for drone strikes on overseas al Qaeda members was leaked to NBC News earlier this month. 


The Justice Department “white paper” surfaced ahead of last Thursday’s Senate confirmation hearing of President Obama’s choice for CIA director, his chief counterterrorism adviser John Brennan.

The leaked memo stipulates that the government can lawfully kill one of its own citizens overseas if it determines the person has ties to al Qaeda or one of its affiliates and poses an “imminent threat.” 

But critics have said the broad language used in the document allows for an elastic interpretation, raising questions over how much authority the administration should have over the lives of American citizens.

Americans are, however, inclined to support the government in its lethal attacks on citizens and non-citizens it deems to be terrorists, according to the Hill Poll.

The poll found that 53 percent of likely voters said it should be legal for the U.S. government to kill non-U.S. citizens who meet that description. Meanwhile, 44 percent said it should be legal for the U.S. government to kill American citizens who it believes are terrorists and present an imminent threat.

By contrast, 21 percent of respondents thought such an action should be illegal if the target is a non-U.S. citizen. A slightly higher percentage of voters, 31 percent, thought killing individuals whom the government believes are terrorists should be illegal when the target is an American citizen. 

A significant proportion of respondents — 26 percent and 24 percent, respectively — said they were not sure if such attacks should be legal, regardless of whether the target was an American or not.

When asked whether they oppose or back the administration’s drone program, however, a significantly higher percentage of voters voiced their support. Sixty-five percent of respondents said they support the use of unmanned drones to kill “people in foreign countries whom the US government says are terrorists and present an imminent threat,” while just 19 percent of voters said they oppose the policy.

The findings were based on a nationwide survey of 1,000 likely voters conducted on Feb. 7 by Pulse Opinion Research.


http://thehill.com/polls/282147-hill-poll-voters-obama-no-better-than-bush-on-security-vs-civil-liberties

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/11/obama-drones-poll_n_2662133.html?ref=new-york&&ref=new-york&ncid=edlinkusaolp00000008

by on Feb. 14, 2013 at 5:31 PM
Replies (11-18):
Friday
by Platinum Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 5:07 PM


Quoting SallyMJ:

What about the drone attacks on American citizens without even credible intelligence of terrorist activity? And there has been discussion of having them in America. That scares the hell out of me! 

Goodbye, Constitution.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

I agree with you that Obama governs as if he is King of America instead of head of one of the three Constitutional branches of government, and has advocated unconstitutional murder by drone of American citizens without actual proof, just a hunch".


And Obama has been blaming Bush for the past 5+ years for his own failures.

How was Bush even remotely similar to that?

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

No, they are pretty different. Completely different ideology.

And one blames the other constantly, going on 6 years. I bet it will be 9 at least.

One similarity: they both spend like drunken sailors. That is true. Unfortunately. Not good for the country.

Quoting Friday:

I don't call him Bush-lite for nothing. Only difference is on social issues.



If Obama weren't so much like Dubya, I might have voted for him last year. Both pander to corporate interests, play loose with the Constitution and spend like idiots. Tomato-tomoto



I'll give Dubya credit for not blaming Clinton, even tho every other Rep/Con I saw did. Obama shouldn't blame Dubya, no matter how true it was, it's bad form for a sitting president to blame the last guy.

The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, Dubya started it and Obama extended it. Warrentless wire taps, waterboarding and more. That's just off the top of my head.

Take out social issues and I can barely tell the two apart.



That would be one of the reasons that Obama isn't much better than Dubya. Don't forget Dubya's signing statements, right up there with Obama's exec orders.

I'm no fan of either and believe our govt hasn't really worked for the people since I was a baby, at least.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 5:20 PM

Who was president when you were a  baby? Just curious.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

What about the drone attacks on American citizens without even credible intelligence of terrorist activity? And there has been discussion of having them in America. That scares the hell out of me! 

Goodbye, Constitution.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

I agree with you that Obama governs as if he is King of America instead of head of one of the three Constitutional branches of government, and has advocated unconstitutional murder by drone of American citizens without actual proof, just a hunch".


And Obama has been blaming Bush for the past 5+ years for his own failures.

How was Bush even remotely similar to that?

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

No, they are pretty different. Completely different ideology.

And one blames the other constantly, going on 6 years. I bet it will be 9 at least.

One similarity: they both spend like drunken sailors. That is true. Unfortunately. Not good for the country.

Quoting Friday:

I don't call him Bush-lite for nothing. Only difference is on social issues.



If Obama weren't so much like Dubya, I might have voted for him last year. Both pander to corporate interests, play loose with the Constitution and spend like idiots. Tomato-tomoto



I'll give Dubya credit for not blaming Clinton, even tho every other Rep/Con I saw did. Obama shouldn't blame Dubya, no matter how true it was, it's bad form for a sitting president to blame the last guy.

The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, Dubya started it and Obama extended it. Warrentless wire taps, waterboarding and more. That's just off the top of my head.

Take out social issues and I can barely tell the two apart.



That would be one of the reasons that Obama isn't much better than Dubya. Don't forget Dubya's signing statements, right up there with Obama's exec orders.

I'm no fan of either and believe our govt hasn't really worked for the people since I was a baby, at least.



Friday
by Platinum Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 5:32 PM


Quoting SallyMJ:

Who was president when you were a  baby? Just curious.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

What about the drone attacks on American citizens without even credible intelligence of terrorist activity? And there has been discussion of having them in America. That scares the hell out of me! 

Goodbye, Constitution.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

I agree with you that Obama governs as if he is King of America instead of head of one of the three Constitutional branches of government, and has advocated unconstitutional murder by drone of American citizens without actual proof, just a hunch".


And Obama has been blaming Bush for the past 5+ years for his own failures.

How was Bush even remotely similar to that?

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

No, they are pretty different. Completely different ideology.

And one blames the other constantly, going on 6 years. I bet it will be 9 at least.

One similarity: they both spend like drunken sailors. That is true. Unfortunately. Not good for the country.

Quoting Friday:

I don't call him Bush-lite for nothing. Only difference is on social issues.



If Obama weren't so much like Dubya, I might have voted for him last year. Both pander to corporate interests, play loose with the Constitution and spend like idiots. Tomato-tomoto



I'll give Dubya credit for not blaming Clinton, even tho every other Rep/Con I saw did. Obama shouldn't blame Dubya, no matter how true it was, it's bad form for a sitting president to blame the last guy.

The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, Dubya started it and Obama extended it. Warrentless wire taps, waterboarding and more. That's just off the top of my head.

Take out social issues and I can barely tell the two apart.



That would be one of the reasons that Obama isn't much better than Dubya. Don't forget Dubya's signing statements, right up there with Obama's exec orders.

I'm no fan of either and believe our govt hasn't really worked for the people since I was a baby, at least.



Nixon took office shortly after I was born. The BS might go farther back than that but I'm still learning about history and politics. I have a ton of reading to do when I get my new glasses.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 5:35 PM

Hee hee. Those glasses better be cute, or I'm telling!  :)

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

Who was president when you were a  baby? Just curious.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

What about the drone attacks on American citizens without even credible intelligence of terrorist activity? And there has been discussion of having them in America. That scares the hell out of me! 

Goodbye, Constitution.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

I agree with you that Obama governs as if he is King of America instead of head of one of the three Constitutional branches of government, and has advocated unconstitutional murder by drone of American citizens without actual proof, just a hunch".


And Obama has been blaming Bush for the past 5+ years for his own failures.

How was Bush even remotely similar to that?

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

No, they are pretty different. Completely different ideology.

And one blames the other constantly, going on 6 years. I bet it will be 9 at least.

One similarity: they both spend like drunken sailors. That is true. Unfortunately. Not good for the country.

Quoting Friday:

I don't call him Bush-lite for nothing. Only difference is on social issues.



If Obama weren't so much like Dubya, I might have voted for him last year. Both pander to corporate interests, play loose with the Constitution and spend like idiots. Tomato-tomoto



I'll give Dubya credit for not blaming Clinton, even tho every other Rep/Con I saw did. Obama shouldn't blame Dubya, no matter how true it was, it's bad form for a sitting president to blame the last guy.

The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, Dubya started it and Obama extended it. Warrentless wire taps, waterboarding and more. That's just off the top of my head.

Take out social issues and I can barely tell the two apart.



That would be one of the reasons that Obama isn't much better than Dubya. Don't forget Dubya's signing statements, right up there with Obama's exec orders.

I'm no fan of either and believe our govt hasn't really worked for the people since I was a baby, at least.



Nixon took office shortly after I was born. The BS might go farther back than that but I'm still learning about history and politics. I have a ton of reading to do when I get my new glasses.



Friday
by Platinum Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 6:19 PM


Quoting SallyMJ:

Hee hee. Those glasses better be cute, or I'm telling!  :)

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

Who was president when you were a  baby? Just curious.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

What about the drone attacks on American citizens without even credible intelligence of terrorist activity? And there has been discussion of having them in America. That scares the hell out of me! 

Goodbye, Constitution.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

I agree with you that Obama governs as if he is King of America instead of head of one of the three Constitutional branches of government, and has advocated unconstitutional murder by drone of American citizens without actual proof, just a hunch".


And Obama has been blaming Bush for the past 5+ years for his own failures.

How was Bush even remotely similar to that?

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

No, they are pretty different. Completely different ideology.

And one blames the other constantly, going on 6 years. I bet it will be 9 at least.

One similarity: they both spend like drunken sailors. That is true. Unfortunately. Not good for the country.

Quoting Friday:

I don't call him Bush-lite for nothing. Only difference is on social issues.



If Obama weren't so much like Dubya, I might have voted for him last year. Both pander to corporate interests, play loose with the Constitution and spend like idiots. Tomato-tomoto



I'll give Dubya credit for not blaming Clinton, even tho every other Rep/Con I saw did. Obama shouldn't blame Dubya, no matter how true it was, it's bad form for a sitting president to blame the last guy.

The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, Dubya started it and Obama extended it. Warrentless wire taps, waterboarding and more. That's just off the top of my head.

Take out social issues and I can barely tell the two apart.



That would be one of the reasons that Obama isn't much better than Dubya. Don't forget Dubya's signing statements, right up there with Obama's exec orders.

I'm no fan of either and believe our govt hasn't really worked for the people since I was a baby, at least.



Nixon took office shortly after I was born. The BS might go farther back than that but I'm still learning about history and politics. I have a ton of reading to do when I get my new glasses.



I'll do my best. I can't decide if I want to try bifocals or separate reading glasses. Decisions, decisions.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 6:34 PM

I guess the question is: Do you need glasses for both distance and near? If so, I'd get bifocals. They have nice disappearing line ones. 

If you only need glasses for up close, I'd get reading glasses. 

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

Hee hee. Those glasses better be cute, or I'm telling!  :)

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

Who was president when you were a  baby? Just curious.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

What about the drone attacks on American citizens without even credible intelligence of terrorist activity? And there has been discussion of having them in America. That scares the hell out of me! 

Goodbye, Constitution.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

I agree with you that Obama governs as if he is King of America instead of head of one of the three Constitutional branches of government, and has advocated unconstitutional murder by drone of American citizens without actual proof, just a hunch".


And Obama has been blaming Bush for the past 5+ years for his own failures.

How was Bush even remotely similar to that?

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

No, they are pretty different. Completely different ideology.

And one blames the other constantly, going on 6 years. I bet it will be 9 at least.

One similarity: they both spend like drunken sailors. That is true. Unfortunately. Not good for the country.

Quoting Friday:

I don't call him Bush-lite for nothing. Only difference is on social issues.



If Obama weren't so much like Dubya, I might have voted for him last year. Both pander to corporate interests, play loose with the Constitution and spend like idiots. Tomato-tomoto



I'll give Dubya credit for not blaming Clinton, even tho every other Rep/Con I saw did. Obama shouldn't blame Dubya, no matter how true it was, it's bad form for a sitting president to blame the last guy.

The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, Dubya started it and Obama extended it. Warrentless wire taps, waterboarding and more. That's just off the top of my head.

Take out social issues and I can barely tell the two apart.



That would be one of the reasons that Obama isn't much better than Dubya. Don't forget Dubya's signing statements, right up there with Obama's exec orders.

I'm no fan of either and believe our govt hasn't really worked for the people since I was a baby, at least.



Nixon took office shortly after I was born. The BS might go farther back than that but I'm still learning about history and politics. I have a ton of reading to do when I get my new glasses.



I'll do my best. I can't decide if I want to try bifocals or separate reading glasses. Decisions, decisions.



Friday
by Platinum Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 6:39 PM


Quoting SallyMJ:

I guess the question is: Do you need glasses for both distance and near? If so, I'd get bifocals. They have nice disappearing line ones. 

If you only need glasses for up close, I'd get reading glasses. 

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

Hee hee. Those glasses better be cute, or I'm telling!  :)

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

Who was president when you were a  baby? Just curious.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

What about the drone attacks on American citizens without even credible intelligence of terrorist activity? And there has been discussion of having them in America. That scares the hell out of me! 

Goodbye, Constitution.

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

I agree with you that Obama governs as if he is King of America instead of head of one of the three Constitutional branches of government, and has advocated unconstitutional murder by drone of American citizens without actual proof, just a hunch".


And Obama has been blaming Bush for the past 5+ years for his own failures.

How was Bush even remotely similar to that?

Quoting Friday:


Quoting SallyMJ:

No, they are pretty different. Completely different ideology.

And one blames the other constantly, going on 6 years. I bet it will be 9 at least.

One similarity: they both spend like drunken sailors. That is true. Unfortunately. Not good for the country.

Quoting Friday:

I don't call him Bush-lite for nothing. Only difference is on social issues.



If Obama weren't so much like Dubya, I might have voted for him last year. Both pander to corporate interests, play loose with the Constitution and spend like idiots. Tomato-tomoto



I'll give Dubya credit for not blaming Clinton, even tho every other Rep/Con I saw did. Obama shouldn't blame Dubya, no matter how true it was, it's bad form for a sitting president to blame the last guy.

The Patriot Act is unconstitutional, Dubya started it and Obama extended it. Warrentless wire taps, waterboarding and more. That's just off the top of my head.

Take out social issues and I can barely tell the two apart.



That would be one of the reasons that Obama isn't much better than Dubya. Don't forget Dubya's signing statements, right up there with Obama's exec orders.

I'm no fan of either and believe our govt hasn't really worked for the people since I was a baby, at least.



Nixon took office shortly after I was born. The BS might go farther back than that but I'm still learning about history and politics. I have a ton of reading to do when I get my new glasses.



I'll do my best. I can't decide if I want to try bifocals or separate reading glasses. Decisions, decisions.



I need bifocals. Been wearing reading glasses since I was a teenager and now my distance vision is going. I've just had too many people tell me how much they hated bifocals, never get used to them and prefer having 2 pairs, one for distance and one for reading. I tend to over think things and have a hard time making decisions like this. Stupid, I know but we all have our quirks. I come by it honestly, my dad analyzes and compares and ponders forever before making decisions, especially those involving money.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

MsDenuninani
by Bronze Member on Feb. 15, 2013 at 7:16 PM
1 mom liked this

Civil liberties will get narrower and narrower and the power of the executive office will get larger and larger until the Courts step in. 

No President will accept less power than the President before him. 

The third branch of government - the courts - need to step in. 

They, not the President, are the final word as to the Constitution. 

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