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Washington Post - ABC News Poll

Sunday, February 2, 2003

The latest Washington Post-ABC News poll is based on telephone interviews with 855 randomly selected adults nationwide, and was conducted Jan.30 - Feb. 1, 2003. The margin of sampling error for overall results is plus or minus 4 percentage points. Sampling error is only one of many potential sources of error in this or any other public opinion poll. Interviewing was conducted by TNS Intersearch of Horsham, Pa.

*= less than 0.5 percent

1. Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling his job as president? Do you approve/disapprove strongly or somewhat?

              ---------Approve---------   --------Disapprove-------    No 
             NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Strongly   Somewhat   opin.
2/1/03       62       41         21      34       22         13        4
1/28/03      62       43         19      36       23         13        2
1/27/03      59       39         21      37       22         15        4
1/20/03      59       36         23      38       22         16        2
12/15/02     66       37         28      32       20         12        2
11/4/02  LV  67       45         23      31       20         12        1
11/3/02  LV  67       45         22      32       20         12        1
11/2/02  LV  67       47         20      32       23          9        1
10/27/02 All 67       39         28      29       16         13        4
10/27/02 LV  68       47         21      30       16         14        3
9/26/02      67       42         25      30       18         12        3
9/8/02       71       42         28      27       15         12        3
7/28/02      69       39         31      28       14         14        3
7/15/02      72       42         31      25       13         12        2
6/17/02      74       42         32      22       13          9        4
6/9/02       77       41         36      20       11          9        3
5/19/02      76       48         28      22       13          8        3
4/21/02      78       47         31      20       10          9        2
3/28/02      79       49         30      18       10          8        3
3/10/02      82       52         30      16        7          9        2
1/27/02      83       56         27      14        7          7        3
12/19/01     86       64         22      12        6          6        2
11/27/01     89       69         21       9        5          4        1
11/6/01      89       65         24       9        4          5        2
10/9/01      92       76         16       6        3          3        1
9/27/01      90       70         20       6        3          3        4
9/13/01      86       63         23      12        6          5        2
9/9/01       55       26         29      41       22         20        3
8/12/01      61       28         33      31       17         14        8
7/30/01      59       28         30      38       22         17        3
6/3/01       55       27         28      40       22         18        6
4/22/01      63       33         30      32       16         16        5
3/25/01      58       NA         NA      33       NA         NA        8
2/25/01      55       NA         NA      23       NA         NA       22

2. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Bush is handling:

2/1/03 - Summary Table*

                                           Approve    Disapprove    No op.
a. The situation with Iraq and 
   Saddam Hussein                             61          35           3
b. The economy                                44          52           4
c. The U.S. campaign against terrorism        75          21           3
d. Medicare                                   44          41          16
e. Prescription drug benefits for the 
   elderly                                    46          35          19 
f. Taxes                                      51          43           7
g. The federal budget                         47          46           8

*All respondents asked item a. Half sample asked b-d, other half asked e-g.

Trend:

a. The situation with Iraq and Saddam Hussein

             Approve     Disapprove     No opinion
2/1/03        61            35              3
1/28/03       58            38              4
1/27/03       57            40              3
1/20/03       50            46              4
12/15/02      58            37              5
11/4/02  LV   56            40              4
11/3/02  LV   57            40              4
11/2/02  LV   56            41              3
10/27/02 All  57            38              5
10/27/02 LV   61            37              3
9/26/02       58            39              3
9/14/02       65            31              4
8/29/02       52            36             12

b. The economy

            Approve     Disapprove     No opinion  
2/1/03        44            52              4
1/28/03       46            49              4
1/27/03       47            47              5
1/20/03       43            53              4
1/5/03        50            43              7  
12/15/02      50            46              4                
11/4/02  LV   53            45              2                
11/3/02  LV   52            46              2                
11/2/02  LV   55            43              2                
10/27/02      51            43              6                
10/27/02 LV   53            44              3                
9/26/02       51            47              3                
9/8/02        57            40              4                
7/28/02       57            39              4                
7/15/02       58            38              3                
4/21/02       64            33              3                
1/27/02       62            34              4                
12/19/01      67            27              6                
11/6/01       72            23              5                
9/9/01        48            48              4                
7/30/01       52            45              3                
6/3/01        53            41              6                
4/22/01       55            38              7                
3/25/01       50            42              8                

c. The U.S. campaign against terrorism

             ---------Approve---------   --------Disapprove-------    No 
             NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Strongly   Somewhat   opin.
2/1/03       75       NA         NA      21       NA         NA        3
1/27/03      72       NA         NA      26       NA         NA        2
1/20/03      71       NA         NA      25       NA         NA        4
12/15/02     79       NA         NA      20       NA         NA        1
11/4/02  LV  76       NA         NA      22       NA         NA        1
11/3/02  LV  77       NA         NA      22       NA         NA        3
11/2/02  LV  78       NA         NA      21       NA         NA        2
10/27/02 All 74       NA         NA      23       NA         NA        4
10/27/02 LV  78       NA         NA      20       NA         NA        2
9/26/02      70       NA         NA      28       NA         NA        2
9/8/02       74       NA         NA      24       NA         NA        2
7/28/02      81       NA         NA      17       NA         NA        2
7/15/02      83       NA         NA      15       NA         NA        2
5/19/02      79       51         27      19       10          9        3
4/21/02      81       56         25      18       10          7        2
3/10/02      88       64         24      10        5          5        2
1/27/02      88       NA         NA      10       NA         NA        2
12/19/01     89       67         22       9        5          4        2
10/15/01     92       75         17       5        3          3        3


d,e. No trend.

f. Taxes

             Approve     Disapprove     No opinion
2/1/03        51            43              7
1/20/03       50            45              5
12/15/02      51            44              5

g. The federal budget

            Approve     Disapprove     No opinion
2/1/03        47            46              8
1/20/03       43            47             10
7/15/02       50            42              8
1/27/02       59            30             12
9/9/01        46            48              6
7/30/01       53            42              5

3. Would you favor or oppose having U.S. forces take military action against Iraq to force Saddam Hussein from power? Would you say you favor/oppose military action against Iraq strongly or only somewhat?

            ----------Favor----------   ----------Oppose----------    No 
            NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Strongly   Somewhat    opin.
2/1/03      66       48         19      31       18         14         3
1/28/03     63       43         19      32       20         13         5
1/27/03     61       40         21      36       21         15         3
1/20/03     57       40         17      41       25         16         3
12/15/02    62       41         20      35       20         15         3
11/17/02    64       NA         NA      29       NA         NA         7
9/26/02     61       NA         NA      34       NA         NA         5
9/14/02     68       NA         NA      29       NA         NA         3
8/29/02     56       NA         NA      34       NA         NA        10
8/11/02     69       NA         NA      22       NA         NA         9
3/10/02     72       NA         NA      24       NA         NA         4      
2/21/02     67       46         21      30       12         18         4
1/27/02     71       NA         NA      24       NA         NA         4
12/19/01    72       NA         NA      24       NA         NA         5
11/27/01    78       NA         NA      17       NA         NA         6
10/11/94*   72       NA         NA      23       NA         NA         5
1/15/93**   82       NA         NA      15       NA         NA         3 
8/21/92 RV  65       NA         NA      30       NA         NA         5 
2/9/92      62       NA         NA      35       NA         NA         3
4/22/91     51       NA         NA      43       NA         NA         6
4/5/91      54       NA         NA      37       NA         NA         9
3/15/91     57       NA         NA      38       NA         NA         5
*10/11/94 and previous: Gallup
**1/15/93 and previous: Would you support or oppose having U.S. forces 
resume military action...?  

4. (IF FAVOR, Q3) What if the United Nations opposes such action - in that case would you favor or oppose having U.S. forces take military action against Iraq?

Q3/4 NET 

            Favor     Oppose     No opinion
2/1/03        51        46             3
1/28/03       46        50             4
1/27/03       44        52             3

Compare to:

Would you favor or oppose having U.S. forces take military action against Iraq, even if the United Nations opposes such action?

            Favor     Oppose     No opinion
12/15/02      37        58             5 

5. (HALF SAMPLE) Do you think Bush has or has not presented enough evidence to show why the United States should use military force to remove Saddam Hussein from power?

            Enough    Not enough     No opinion
2/1/03        54          41              4
1/20/03       48          47              6

6. (HALF SAMPLE) Do you think Bush has presented enough evidence showing why the United States should use military force to remove Saddam Hussein from power, or would you like him to present more evidence?

            Has enough     Would like        No
             evidence         more        opinion
2/1/03          42             57            1
1/28/03         42             56            2
1/27/03         36             60            3
1/20/03         39             58            2
12/15/02        40             58            2
9/14/02         48             50            2

7. Before deciding whether to attack Iraq, how much longer do you think the administration should give the United Nations weapons inspectors to search for chemical, biological and nuclear weapons there - a few weeks, a few months, or more than that?

             Less than a        A few     A few         More        No
           few weeks (vol.)     weeks     months     than that     opin.
2/1/03            10              41        33           13          3

8. Imagine the U.N. inspectors cannot find hard evidence that Iraq has chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. In that case, do you think the United States should or should not have to present its own evidence that Iraq has these weapons, before the U.S. attacks Iraq?

            Should     Should not     No opinion
2/1/03        68           29              4
1/20/03       71           27              2
 

9. (IF SHOULD, Q8) What if presenting that evidence means the United States has to reveal sensitive intelligence sources - in that case do you think the United States should or should not have to present its own evidence that Iraq has these weapons?

            Should     Should not     No opinion
2/1/03        66           28              6
1/20/03       67           30              4

10. Say the United States has circumstantial evidence suggesting that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction, but the United States does not have direct evidence proving it. Do you think circumstantial evidence, without direct evidence, would or would not be enough to justify going to war with Iraq?

           Would be     Would not be     Depends       No
            enough         enough         (vol.)     opinion
2/1/03        42             52             3           3

11. Which concerns you more - that the Bush administration might move too quickly to take military action against Iraq, or the Bush administration might not move quickly enough?

              Too       Not quickly     Neither       No
            quickly        enough        (vol)      opinion
2/1/03         49            44            4           2
1/28/03        51            39            7           3
1/27/03        54            36            7           3
1/20/03        55            39            5           2
12/15/02       54            40            5           2
9/26/02        52            40            6           1

12. Do you think (ITEM) is or is not a major reason for the U.S. confrontation with Iraq?

2/1/03 - Summary Table

                                             Yes     No     No opin.
a. protecting the United States from 
   Iraqi and terrorist threats               78      18         4

b. preserving U.S. access to Mideast oil     45      49         6

13. Just your best guess, how long do you think a war with Iraq would last - a few weeks, several months, about a year or longer than that?

            Weeks     Months     Year     Longer     No opin. 
2/1/03       19        32        18        27           5

14. Do you think there would or would not be a significant number of U.S. military casualties in a war with Iraq?

            Yes,        No,           No
           would     would not     opinion
2/1/03       65          31           4

15. Which of these should be the highest priority for Bush and Congress: the economy, the war on terrorism, the possibility of war with Iraq, or domestic issues like health care, Social Security and education?

                                     Domestic  Combination  All    None    No
           Economy  Terrorism  Iraq   issues      (vol.)   (vol.) (vol.)  opin.
2/1/03        24        24      17      20          7        7       1      1

16. Just your best guess: Do you think a war with Iraq will or will not take money away from federal government programs that benefit you?

           Yes     No     No opinion
2/1/03      70     26           4


16a. (IF YES, Q16) Are you concerned about that, or not concerned? (IF CONCERNED) Are you concerned a lot, or only somewhat?

           -------Concerned------        Not           No
           NET   A lot   Somewhat     concerned     opinion      
2/1/03     70      42       28            29            1

16/16a NET:

           ---------------Take money from programs---------------
                 -------Concerned------        Not           No            No
           Yes   NET   A lot   Somewhat     concerned     opinion   No    opin.
2/1/03     70    49      29       20            20            *     26      4

17. Now I have a question about Medicare, the government program that provides health insurance for seniors and some disabled people. Please tell me which ONE of the following four statements comes closest to your view of the Medicare program. Would you say : the program is in crisis; the program has major problems, but is not in crisis; the program has minor problems; or the program has no problems?

                       Major      Minor       No         No
            Crisis     probs.     probs.     probs.     opin.
2/1/03        18         52         23         2          4
9/1/02*       10         47         33         3          7
1/19/98       25         46         24         2          2
3/23/97*      21         54         19         3          4
*Post/Kaiser/Harvard

18. As you may know, Medicare does not currently pay for most prescription drugs. Which statement comes closest to your opinion about what the federal government should do? Do you think the government should keep things as they are now; should pay for part of prescription drug costs for all seniors; or should pay for part of prescription drug costs only for those seniors who agree to join a managed care plan?

           Keep things     Pay part for     Pay part for seniors        No
           as they are     all seniors      in managed care only     opinion
2/1/03           9              64                   21                  5

19. Do you think Bush's proposals on cutting taxes (favor the rich), (favor the middle class), (favor the poor), or (treat all people about equally)?

           Favor    Favor      Favor    Treat all      No
           rich     middle     Poor      equally     opinion
2/1/03      56       10          2         26           5
1/20/03     61        7          2         23           7

20. (HALF SAMPLE) As you may know, Bush has proposed cutting taxes by a total of 670 billion dollars over the next 10 years. What is your preference - (to have this tax cut), or (to have the federal government spend more on domestic programs such as education, health care and Social Security)?

            Tax     Spend     Neither      No
            cut      more     (vol.)      opin.
2/1/03      29        67         3          2
1/20/03     30        67         2          1
6/3/01*     33        63         3          1
* "would have been"

21. (HALF SAMPLE) As you may know, Bush has proposed cutting taxes by a total of 670 billion dollars over the next 10 years. What is your preference - (to have this tax cut), or (to have the federal government use the money to help balance the federal budget)?

            Tax     Balance     Neither      No
            cut      budget      (vol.)     opin.
2/1/03      40         53          2          5
1/20/03     38         56          2          3

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