At least one in three Americans believe that George W. Bush should face impeachment for misleading the public and Congress about Saddam's weapons of mass destruction to create support for war on Iraq. This is a new finding from a national survey conducted by the Retro Poll organization between October 29 and November 12. The actual proportion supporting impeachment was 40% but with a margin of error of plus or minus 8%, 1 in 3 remains a conservative population estimate. "We are seeing a rising tide of public anger that no one is paying attention to", said Dr. Marc Sapir, Retro Poll's Director.
Currently 47% of those polled know that Saddam's Iraq had no connection to the 9/11 attacks, up from 36% in a Retro Poll last April. Of that 47% who are now clear on this fact, 52% favored impeachment. Even more dramatic was the strength of support for impeachment among those who know that the Al Qaeda-Saddam connection was also a media-government fabrication, based on little evidence. Of the still small 32% who know that Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda were never partners a whopping 73% favor impeachment and 78% think the U.S. should not have invaded Iraq. (54% of the total sample said the U.S. should not have invaded Iraq which is consistent with recent findings of major polling organizations).
These correlations suggest that the public will likely turn more and more against the war and the Bush group for lying as the facts versus the propaganda are clarified over time. On the other hand, since it was the corporate media that collaborated in the misleading stories about nuclear, chemical and biological materials in Iraq in the first place the possibility of renewed efforts to mislead the public and distort actualities can not be ruled out. However, Sapir claims, "these correlations lend evidence to the assertion that most differences among Americans on these important issues are driven less by different values or ideology than through the daily infusion via the media of fabricated misinformation."
Other important findings concern the war on terrorism and also health care. Support for the anti-terror campaign is based among the same group that has absorbed incorrect information put out by the government-media combo, but that group is declining. For example, only 15% of those polled thought that the Patriot Act was strengthening their rights (down from 34% last April) while 32% said it removes important rights (up from 19% in April). 61% of those polled supported a national health insurance fund covering everyone, similar to other polls' findings.
Knowledge on Retro Poll's fact questions ranged widely. Highs were the 75% who knew that we have a constitutional right to a speedy trial and to be released unless charged; and 67% knowing that Nixon and Clinton were the two recent presidents who faced potential or actual impeachment. Very low knowledge levels were found concerning which of three countries did not supply Saddam Hussein with nuclear, chemical and biological materials for weapons (17% right) and U.S. poor international ranking in health care outcomes (20-54th) (19% correct). Only 26% of respondents knew that about 200 cities and 3 states have passed resolutions calling for repeal of key parts of the Patriot Act that remove democratic rights.
The poll sampled 165
persons from 38 states. 51% were women and 49% men. 61.5% had European-American
backgrounds, 11.5% African American, 12.2 % Latino, 1.3 % Native American,
1.9% Asian-Pacific, 9% decline to state. Highest state sampling included
California (10.8%), New York (8.9%), Texas (7.6%), Ohio (5.7%), Illinois
(5.1%), Pennsylvania and New Jersey (4.4%).
Sapir MD, MPH
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