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52% Say Trump Travel Ban Anti-Terrorist, Not Anti-Muslim

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Half of voters still favor President Trump’s temporary travel ban and see it as an anti-terrorist measure, not religious discrimination. Voters also think the U.S. Supreme Court is likely to uphold the ban.

The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 50% of Likely U.S. Voters favor temporarily barring entry to the United States of people from Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen until the federal government improves its ability to screen out potential terrorists from coming here. Forty-one percent (41%) are opposed. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Support for the ban is down slightly from the mid-50s in late January.

Critics of the travel ban say it is aimed at blocking Muslims from entering the United States, and 39% agree. Fifty-two percent (52%) say Trump’s order is aimed instead at keeping out terrorists. The seven Muslim-majority countries in question were identified by the Obama administration as terrorist havens.

Democrats are far more likely than Republicans and unaffiliated voters to view the temporary ban as anti-Muslim and to oppose it.

Fifty percent (50%) of all voters think the Supreme Court is likely to uphold the president’s temporary travel ban which has been stopped by lower courts, with 21% who say it’s Very Likely. Forty percent (40%) feel the high court is unlikely to uphold the ban, but that includes only 12% who say it is Not At All Likely to do so.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on June 4-5, 2017 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Even before the weekend horror in London, 77% of Americans said a terrorist attack like the one days before in Manchester is likely to occur here within the next year, although only 36% say it’s Very Likely.

Most voters of all ages agree that Trump’s travel ban is aimed at keeping out terrorists. But a plurality (48%) of those under 40 oppose the ban, while the majority of their elders favor it.

Seventy-four percent (74%) of Republicans and 56% of unaffiliated voters view the temporary ban as anti-terrorist. Fifty-eight percent (58%) of Democrats see it as anti-Muslim instead. Even more Democrats (64%) oppose the travel ban, while 77% of GOP voters and unaffiliateds by a 50% to 39% margin favor it.

Republicans are much more optimistic than the others, however, that the Supreme Court will uphold the ban.

Ninety-seven percent (97%) of voters who Strongly Approve of the job the president is doing favor the travel ban. Among voters who Strongly Disapprove of Trump’s job performance, 79% oppose it.

The radical Islamic State group (ISIS) has taken credit for both of the recent attacks in England. Eighty-seven percent (87%) of all U.S. voters consider ISIS a serious threat to the United States, and 69% believe the group must be completely destroyed to end its terrorist attacks.

Fifty-eight percent (58%) continue to believe the United States is at war with radical Islamic terrorism.

In late March, though, just 38% of voters felt the government wasn’t focusing enough on the potential threat from domestic Islamic terrorism, down from 50% a year earlier.  Perhaps in part that’s because confidence that the United States has the edge in the war on terror remains higher than it has been in several years.

Most continue to believe Islamic leaders should do more to promote peace in their faith, but voters are evenly divided now over whether Islam encourages violence more than other religions.

Last September when President Obama proposed increasing the number of Middle Eastern and North African refugees allowed into this country, 62% said his plan posed an increased national security risk to the United States.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only. 

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