What the Public Really Wants on Iraq

    Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki arrives in Washington this week to help President Bush persuade the American people to stay the course in Iraq. Public opinion polls, however, show a solid majority of Americans now believe the Iraq war is a mistake and even more believe Iraq is now engulfed in a civil war that has our troops caught in a costly crossfire. Staying the course has become a less and less attractive option to the American public.

    Therefore, public interest is strong and increasing for a plausible plan to leave Iraq.  This is the key question about Iraq that divides Americans today, according to an in-depth analysis of public opinion polls conducted by the Center for American Progress and The Century Foundation.

    In the coming weeks and months, America’s political leaders will be sifting through all of these polls in search of data that support their positions on Iraq in the run up to congressional elections in November. That’s why it’s important to examine the questions and answers of many different public opinion polls, as we do below, so that the most solid and robust conclusions about Americans’ views on Iraq can be drawn.  As our analysis shows, most Americans are well-aware of the deteriorating situation in Iraq and want their political leaders to come up with a plausible plan for leaving.

    To read the full report please go to the following link: