Saturday, December 28, 2002

Wishing It Doesn't Make It So

Another Minnesota Poll in today's Minneapolis Star Tribune on possible war with Iraq. The Strib chose a front page headline of "Uneasy Support For War" to lead the story on the poll and described the results as:

With America seemingly on the brink of war, a slim majority of Minnesotans expresses uneasy support for military action to oust Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.

While I suppose you could say that the 53% of Minnesotans who favor military action is indeed a "slim majority" you could also call the 37% who oppose military action "slightly more than a third". The Strib also focuses on the fact that 75% of respondents were either very or somewhat worried that war against Iraq could lead to a wider all out war in the Mid East. I think you would be a fool not to consider the possibility of such a wider war but to be worried about it is not the same as using it as a reason not to act against Iraq.

The fact is that the 53% of Minnesotans who favor military action against Iraq is a fairly solid figure which has not changed much during the last six months despite the efforts of the Star Tribune editorial board, anti-war activists, and many Democrats. Only 36% of people who identify themselves as DFLers support war against Iraq and I believe that the 54% of DFLers who oppose it would be against just about anything that President Bush was in favor of. Although the results of the last election might indicate otherwise Minnesota is still a slightly Democratic state and if you view the poll results in that light the fact that 53% support military action is actually a good sign.