Americans' Support for War on the Rise
By Dan Balz
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, April 7, 2003; 6:40 PM
As U.S. forces continue the battle of Baghdad, support for the war in Iraq
continues to rise.
The latest Washington Post-ABC News Poll shows that 77 percent of
Americans say they support the decision to go to war, a figure that has
increased as news of the war turned positive. Just 16 percent say they
oppose having gone to war.
The support is not evenly distributed, however. More men support going to
war than do women; southerners are more likely to say they support the war
than are westerners. The more the population is broken down by category --
gender, ideology, party, income or age -- the more those differences are
Roughly half or more of every demographic group measured now supports the
war. Opposition rises above one-third among only two groups: African
Americans and liberal Democrats.
Republicans almost universally support the decision to go to war.
Democrats are more divided, although nearly two-in-three Democrats now say
they support the war. Whites are far more supportive than are African-
Republican men and Republican women support the war in almost equal
numbers, but fewer Democratic women back the operation in Iraq than do
Viewed by age, the most ardent supporters of the war are those between 45
and 54. That means Americans who came of age in the latter stages of the
Vietnam War, many of whom may have been involved in protesting that
conflict, are now overwhelmingly pro-war in Iraq.
Americans who say they have a close friend serving in the Persian Gulf are
somewhat more supportive of the war than are those who say they have a
member of their family stationed in the region.
Post staff writers Richard Morin and Claudia Deane contributed to this
© 2003 The Washington Post Company