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43% Think NSA Domestic Spying Put National Security Ahead of Individual Rights

Thursday, June 27, 2013

President Obama, former Vice President Dick Cheney and others have defended the National Security Agency’s surveillance of Americans’ phone and e-mail communications as necessary for national security. But voters think they should have been more concerned about individual rights.

Some say there is a natural tension between national security and protecting individual rights, but a plurality (43%) of Likely U.S. Voters believes government officials have worried too much about national security at the expense of those rights in the NSA surveillance program. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 12% feel officials have worried too much about protecting individual rights. Thirty percent (30%) think the balance is about right. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on June 24-25, 2013 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.

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