Some polling data to think about:
Nearly two-thirds of people questioned in the poll say they have a moderate or great deal of confidence in the administration to protect the public from future terrorist attacks, up 2 points from August. Thirty-five percent say they have not much or no confidence at all, down 1 point from August.
A number of Republicans have criticized the president over his handling of the attempted bombing of Northwest flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit. But according to the survey, 57 percent approve of the way President Barack Obama’s responded, with 39 percent disapproving of how he handled the situation.
“Only a third of Republicans have a positive view of Obama on this matter, but the key for the administration is the 55 percent of independents who approve of how the president responded to the incident on Christmas Day,” says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.
The poll also indicates no increase in overall concerns about terrorism. “In October, about a third said they were worried that a family member would become a victim of terrorism, and that number is unchanged in the wake of the attempted attack in December,” Holland notes.
“The public seems to react calmly to individual incidents, possibly because most Americans believe that the government cannot prevent every single terrorist plot from occurring.”
Six in 10 say the terrorists will always find a way to launch an attack, no matter what the government does, he adds – identical to the number who felt that way during the Bush administration.
In a nutshell, it means that the public is comfortable with the way Obama is handling things. Republicans are not.
The most refreshing thing in the poll is that six in ten Americans realize that no matter what the government does, terrorists will find a way to strike. That tells me the average American has a better understanding of the realities of terrorism than the average congressmen.