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Inside Politics

Poll: Americans split on worthiness of war

Majority of respondents say Iraq is going badly

Stay with CNN-USA for frequent updates on the Bush administration's show of support for Donald Rumsfeld, and for a look ahead at Tuesday's testimony on the Hill by Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba, who wrote a U.S. Army report on abuse of prisoners in Iraq.
Gallery: Abuse at Abu Ghraib prison (Contains graphic content.)

George W. Bush
America Votes 2004

(CNN) -- A Gallup Poll released Friday shows Americans almost evenly split on the question of whether it was worth going to war in Iraq, with a majority feeling the situation there is going badly.

The survey of 1,000 adults was taken Sunday through Tuesday, with a sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.

When asked if it was worth going to war in Iraq, 50 percent said it was, while 47 percent said it was not, the survey found.

Public opinion was consistent over the month of April, when 137 U.S. forces were killed -- the deadliest month since the U.S. invasion last year -- wavering within a few percentage points over three polls.

With the recent surge in Iraqi resistance, the U.S. public's assessment of how the war is going has slumped.

Since early March, the percentage of Americans who think the war in Iraq is going "moderately badly" or "very badly" has increased from 43 percent to 62 percent in the latest poll.

Over the same period, those feeling the war is going "very well" or "moderately well" has slipped from 55 percent to 47 percent.

The Gallup Poll also asked Americans what they think is the most important issue facing the country today.

As has been the case since Gallup started asking the question in November, the economy and unemployment/jobs were the top concerns.

On noneconomic issues, the war in Iraq and terrorism topped the list. (Today: Rumsfeld faces angry Congress)

In a Gallup Poll released Thursday, 55 percent of respondents disapproved of President Bush's handling of Iraq, while 42 percent approved.

In a January survey, 61 percent said they approved of the Bush policy and 36 percent disapproved. (Full story)

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