Voters feel more strongly than ever that U.S. troops should be brought home from Afghanistan right away or a timetable should be set to bring them back within a year. A new Rasmussen Reports
national telephone survey finds that 35 percent of likely U.S. voters now favor the immediate withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan, the highest level of support to date. Just over 20 percent more support the establishment of a firm timetable to bring the troops home within a year.
The combined total of 56 percent is up four points from the beginning of March, up 13 points from 43 percent from September, and up 19 points from September 2009.
Thirty percent of voters in the survey of 1,000 U.S. voters on May 5 and 6 still oppose the creation of any kind of timetable for withdrawal, and 15 percent remain undecided.
Members of President Barack Obama’s party remain the strongest supporters of bringing the troops home, with 70 percent of Democrats favoring either immediate withdrawal or the creation of a firm timetable for withdrawal within a year. Sharing that view are most unaffiliated voters, at 54 percent and a growing number of Republicans, at 42 percent.
This is the first Rasmussen Reports survey on Afghanistan since the killing of Osama bin Laden, the mastermind behind the al-Qaida terrorist organization. President George Bush launched the war against Afghanistan in October 2001 because the Afghani government continued to harbor al-Qaida after the 9/11 terorrist attacks.
Afghanistan is now America’s longest-running war. Full withdrawal of U.S. troops is expected to take until 2014.
In a related tally, 35 percent now say now say the U.S. mission in Afghanistan will be judged a success. That’s up from 27 percent in March but down from 42 percent in early December. Just 28 percent felt at that time that the United States has a clearly defined military mission in Afghanistan.
Just over one-fourth continue to feel that the mission in Afghanistan will be seen as a failure, down 16 points from December. Nearly 40 percent are not sure how history will view the U.S. war in Afghanistan.
Nearly half of voters still hold the position that the United States should have become involved in Afghanistan, down slightly from March, while 36 percent disagree and 17 percent are not sure.
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