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Poll: Close Gitmo; 76% for Public Health Care Option

Doubt about health care? Maybe, but people’s patience is still intact.

As for Gitmo, the Wall Street Journal extrapolates something else: A majority of people also disapprove of his decision to close the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. What they’re actually referring to is the “worry” quotient, which is shown in the first line below. When you ask an emotional question you’re going to get an answer that fits. The actual truth resides elsewhere, as the full context of the data reveals.

The poll found that 8 in 10 expressed worry that detainees released to other countries might be involved in future attacks here.

Half of the poll respondents said closing the prison would have no effect on protecting the nation from terror threats, but 3 in 10 said they thought it would make the United States less safe. Many of the detainees being held at the prison have not been charged, and nearly 7 in 10 people surveyed said they would support charging them or releasing them back to the country of their capture. Just 24 percent said the detainees should continue to be held without charge for as long as the government deems necessary.

The poll found that a wide majority of those who support closing the prison said their views would not change even if detainees were sent to maximum security prisons in the United States.

“It’s a bad symbol for our country: Preach one thing and do something else,” said Roberta Hall, 73, a Democrat from Barboursville, W.Va. “We can transfer them here. We’re good at keeping prisoners. That’s what we do best.”

Amidst the new polling, the headline writers at US News & World Report are among those talking down Obama’s reality. The article then goes on to quote a bunch of other sites, paying little attention to the foundational data.

Even after weeks of Cheney tag teaming Obama on foreign policy, he remains at a 59% approval on foreign policy, with 59% approving of how he’s handling the threat of terrorism. The New York Times:

But with a job approval rating of 63 percent, Mr. Obama has the backing of Democrats and independents alike, a standing that many presidents would envy and try to use to build support for their policies. His rating has fallen to 23 percent among Republicans, from 44 percent in February, a sign that bridging the partisan divide may remain an unaccomplished goal.

That “deficit” talking point is making a comeback. Someone needs to educate people that in a recession you’re going to run a deficit.

Polling should remind Obama of something else. That bipartisanship is an idea that doesn’t last.

So the President might want to consider doing what’s necessary on health care, because right now 76% of Americans want the public option plan. So, what’s stopping us?

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