Washington Post Poll

This poll was conducted for The Washington Post by telephone April 17 to 18, 2013 among a random national sample of 588 adults, including users of both conventional and cellular phones. The results from the full survey have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus five percentage points. Sampling, data collection and tabulation by SSRS of Media, Pa. Produced for the Washington Post by Capital Insight.

*= less than 0.5 percent

1. As you have probably heard, explosions at the Boston Marathon killed three people and injured more than 100 others. How closely have you been following news about the bombings in Boston, very closely, somewhat closely, not too closely or not at all closely?

          ------ Closely ------   ------ Not closely -------     No
          NET   Very   Somewhat   NET   Not too   Not at all   opinion
4/18/13   80     38       41      20       12         8          -

Trends for comparison: 
“Suicide bombings in Russia”
4/5/10*   36     10       26      64       24          40         *

“The recent terrorist bombings in Bali, Indonesia”
10/24/05* 44     13       31      55       26          29         1

“Terrorist bombings in London, England (July 7, 2005)”
7/10/05*  76     36       40      23       17           6         1     

“Terrorist bombings in Madrid, Spain”
3/21/04*  69     34       35      30       18          12         1
       
“Terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center 
in New York and the Pentagon in Washington
9/17/01*  96     74       22      4         3           1         *

*Pew Research Center

2. How much confidence do you have in the ability of the U.S. government to prevent terrorist attacks against Americans in this country: a great deal, a good amount, a fair amount or none?

              ------- Confident -------    ---- Not confident ---      No
              NET   Grt.deal   Good amt.   NET   Fair amt.   None    opinion
4/18/13       43       15         28       57       42        15        1
5/2/11        61       22         40       37       31        7         1
9/2/10*       44       12         32       56       45        11        *
9/7/07        49       15         34       50       40        10        1
9/7/06        46       15         31       53       43        10        1
1/26/06       50       19         31       49       39        11        *
9/11/05       41       14         27       59       41        18        *
8/21/05       42       14         28       57       43        15        *
9/8/04 RV     52       16         35       47       39         8        1
9/7/03        45       14         31       55       48         7        1
9/8/02        50       12         38       49       43         6        *
7/15/02       46       13         33       54       45         9        *
6/9/02        44       14         30       55       44        11        *
5/19/02       46       17         29       52       42        10        2
3/10/02       55       18         38       44       39         5        *
1/27/02       57       18         40       42       37         6        1
11/27/01      63       24         39       36       32         5        1
11/6/01       52       17         35       47       40         7        1
9/11/01       66       35         31       32       30         2        1
6/2/97        35       10         26       62       52        10        3
8/5/96        35       12         23       65       49        16        *
5/14/95       36       12         24       63       51        12        1
4/20/95       37       13         24       62       51        11        1
6/28/93       59       22         37       41       32         8        1
4/3/89        46       16         30       54       38        16        *
*9/2/10 and previous from Washington Post-ABC News polls

3. How concerned are you about the possibility there will be more major terrorist attacks in the United States – is that something that worries you a great deal, somewhat, not too much or not at all?

            ------- Concerned -------   ---- Not concerned ----     No
            NET   Grt.deal   Somewhat   NET   Not much   At all   opinion
4/18/13     69      32          37      30       20        10        1
9/7/08      64      18          46      36       23        13        *
9/7/07      66      25          41      34       23        10        *
9/7/06      74      29          45      25       17         8        *
8/21/05     66      24          42      33       23        10        1
7/21/05     73      30          43      27       17        10        *
9/8/04 RV   73      25          47      27       20         7        1
9/7/03      71      25          46      29       20         9        *
3/20/03     76      29          47      24       16         8        1
2/16/03     72      27          45      27       18         9        1
9/8/02      74      22          52      26       19         7        0
7/15/02     73      29          44      27       20         7        *
4/21/02     73      30          43      26       18         9        *
3/10/02     70      23          47      30       21         9        1
12/19/01    70      27          43      29       22         8        1
10/15/01    77      35          43      23       14         9        0
10/9/01     82      36          46      18       12         6        *
10/7/01     81      41          40      18       13         4        1
9/27/01*    83      43          39      17       12         5        *
9/11/01     87      49          38      12        7         4        1
6/13/97     62      21          41      38       24        14        *
6/2/97      63      22          41      37       28         9        *
8/5/96      74      31          43      26       18         8        *
4/20/95     78      38          40      21       16         5        1
*9/27/01 and previous: "How concerned are you about the possibility there will be more major terrorist attacks in this country."

4. How concerned are you about the possibility there will be a major terrorist attack in your own community where you live – is this something that worries you a great deal, somewhat, not too much or not at all?

          ------- Concerned -------   ---- Not concerned ----     No
          NET   Grt.deal   Somewhat   NET   Not much   At all   opinion
4/18/13   40       13         27      60       27        32       *
9/11/01   42       16         26      58       33        25       *

5. Did you, personally, do any of the following because of the bombing…? [Insert item]

4/18/13 – Summary Table

                                                      Yes   No   No opinion
a. Stay home from work or leave early                  5    95        *
b. Watch or listen to broadcast news reports          79    21        *
c. Pray for the victims and their families            77    22        *
d. Change your daily plans or activities in any way    6    94        *



Trend for comparison: Did you, personally, do any of the following because of today’s (9/11/01) attacks…? 

9/11/01 – Summary table
                                                      Yes   No   No opinion
a. Stay home from work or leave early                 31    69       *
b. Watch or listen to broadcast news reports          99     1       0
c. Pray for the victims and their families            91     8       *
d. Change your daily plans or activities in any way   53    47       0

6. Have you had any difficulty concentrating on your job or your normal activities because of the way you feel about the bombing in Boston?

           Yes   No   No opinion
4/18/13     9    91       *
10/3/01*   31    68       1
9/17/01*   49    50       1
*Pew Research Center: “the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon”

7. Since Monday’s bombings in Boston, have you or has anyone in your household started avoiding crowded places such as shopping malls because of the chance of terrorism, or not?

                  ----------- No ------------      No                      
            Yes   NET  Considering   Not cons.   opinion
4/18/13      8    92        7           85          *
10/24/01*   14    86       11           75          *
10/21/01     8    91       12           79          1
*ABC News: “Since September 11th”

8. Which worries you more: that the government (will not go far enough to investigate terrorism because of concerns about constitutional rights), or that it (will go too far in compromising constitutional rights in order to investigate terrorism)?

          Will not go   Will go   Neither     No
          far enough    too far    (vol.)   opinion
4/18/13       41           48        5         6

Compare to: Which worries you more: (that Obama/Bush will not go far enough to investigate terrorism because of concerns about constitutional rights), or (that Obama will go too far in compromising constitutional rights in order to investigate terrorism)?

          Will not go   Will go   Neither     No
          far enough    too far    (vol.)   opinion
1/15/10*      63          27          6        4
1/8/06**      48          44          6        2
* “Obama”
** “Bush”

9. Which comes closer to your view – the terrorists will always find a way to launch major attacks no matter what the U.S. government does, or the U.S. government can eventually prevent all major attacks if it works hard enough at it?

            Terrorist will      Government can eventually     No 
           always find a way    prevent all major attacks   opinion
4/18/13          66                        30                  4
9/11/11*         58                        40                  2 
8/14/11          59                        37                  4
1/10/10          60                        39                  1 
9/9/07           57                        40                  3
9/2/06           57                        41                  2
9/4/02           60                        37                  3
*2011 and previous: CNN/ORC, Gallup and CNN/USA Today/Gallup

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