The public has told President Obama how it feels about his plan to close Guantanamo, and the new president has been dealt a very sharp rebuke.
According to a USA Today Gallup Poll, 65 percent of Americans oppose closing Gitmo. Only 32 percent want to close it. Just about every demographic group differs with Obama on this issue. Even 42 percent of Democrats want to keep Gitmo open.
Also, the Democrats’ main spin for closing Gitmo — that it weakens U.S. national security — is a loser. 40 percent say Gitmo has strengthened national security, compared to 18 percent who say its presence has weakened national security. 37 percent say it’s had little or no effect.
Finally, 74 percent of Americans, including 56 percent of Democrats and 78 percent of independents, are against Gitmos detainees being incarcerated in their state.
These poll results underscore how much more Americans trust former Vice President Dick Cheney than they do President Obama on the issue of Guantanamo’s future. In their very recent public debate over Gitmo, Cheney came across as sincere and knowledgeable. Obama, on the other hand, appeared to be echoing “talking points” from the Democratic Party playbook. It was a low moment in his still-young administration.
The president once very cavalierly said that closing Gitmo would be an easy decision. Hopefully, he will admit he was wrong and keep the prison open.
For more information on the poll, go to: http://realclearpolitics.blogs.time.com/2009/06/02/public-sides-with-cheney-against-closing-gitmo/