The violence roiling through Iraq threatens to dash any remaining hopes for a unified country, again calling into question the wisdom of American involvement with that nation.
We gauge public opninion with Frank Newport, editor in chief of the Gallup Poll.
When Americans look back at U.S. involvement in Iraq, do they generally see it as a mistake? Newport says opinions have changed over time, but generally Americans now see it as a mistake. In 2003, 25 percent of Americans said it was a mistake, so there was a stsrong majority in favor of intervention. Just over a year later, a majority of Americans saw U.S. entanglements in Iraq as a mistake. In 2008, when Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain were battling it out for the presidency, 63 percent of Americans regretted U.S. involvement. Now, says Newport, about 57 percent think it was a mistake.
Hillary Clinton continues her tour of the nation this week promoting her new book, “Hard Choices.” Her image is now down from where it was when she was Sec’y of State. She leads all polls of Democrats in terms of their preferred nominee in 2016, but those polls are all but worthless at this point since they measure nothing but name ID.
President Obama’s approval rating, meanwhile, has taken somewhat of a hit, landing bhim in the low 40s according to polling done by Gallup, the Wall Street Journal, and NBC.
The economy remains the top priority for Americans and the nation’s most important problem. But when asked how Americans would prioritize the specific issues Congress and the president can address right now, top on the list was investigating the Veteran affairs healthcare situation — above Benghazi, immigration reform, raising the minimum wage, and the Bergdahl trade with Taliban. No. 2 most important was access to pre-K for all children.
There has been recently a high level of focus on the Mexican border as streams of illegal immigrants come across the border, overwhelming the U.S. forces supposed to handle the process. The majority of Americans say the the United States should focus on what to do with the immigrants already here rather than halting the flow of illegal immigrants into the country.