Poll: 69% of Americans Viewed Obama‚Äôs Syria Speech Positively, 61% Favor His Approach
Poll: 69% of Americans Viewed Obama‚Äôs Syria Speech Positively, 61% Favor His Approachby Tommy Christopher | 11:35 am, September 11th, 2013
President Obama has been fighting an uphill battle to win support for an authorization to strike Syria in retaliation for an Aug. 21 Sarin gas attack, but a CNN/ORC poll taken followingTuesday night‚Äôs East Room address shows good news for the President‚Äôs Syria policy. In that speech, Obama made the case for the necessity of a limited strike, but also for allowing time to let aburgeoning diplomatic solution play out. CNN‚Äôs poll found that 61% of Americans favor ‚Äúthe approach to Syria that Barack Obama described in his speech.‚ÄĚ
Additionally, 69% of respondents said they felt ‚Äúvery positive‚ÄĚ or ‚Äúsomewhat positive‚ÄĚ about the speech. If you drill down on the poll results, though, it appears that approval for the President‚Äôs approach relies heavily on the possible success of the diplomatic solution that suddenly became possible on Monday. From CNN:
The poll indicates that nearly two-thirds of those who watched the speech think that the situation in Syria is likely to be resolved through diplomatic efforts, with 35% disagreeing.
But Obama said that he‚Äôs ordered the U.S. military ‚Äúto maintain their current posture to keep the pressure on Assad, and to be in a position to respond if diplomacy fails.‚ÄĚ
According to the poll, those who watched the president were divided on whether Obama made a convincing case in his speech for U.S. military action in Syria, with 47% saying he did and 50% saying he didn‚Äôt.
Respondents to CNN‚Äôs poll came away from the President‚Äôs speech marginally more confident in President Obama‚Äôs ‚Äúleadership on military and international issues,‚ÄĚ with 32% saying they were ‚Äúmore confident,‚ÄĚ versus 16% ‚Äúless confident,‚ÄĚ and the majority, 52%, unchanged in their opinion.
Time will tell if the combination of the President‚Äôs address, and the added wrinkle of a political solution on the table, will change public opinion that has been against the President‚Äôs policies so far, and which has made congressional support for authorizing a strike politically untenable.