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Poll: Most Alabamians think Iraq going badly

MOBILE (AP) — A new poll shows that nearly two-thirds of Alabama adults feel the war in Iraq is going somewhat or very badly, and nearly the same percentage view President Bush's handling of the situation as only fair or poor.

The Press-Register/University of South Alabama survey was conducted last week after the bipartisan Iraq Study Group released its report that described the situation in Iraq as "grave and deteriorating."

When asked how things are going in the United States' effort to bring stability and order to Iraq, 34 percent said somewhat badly and 33 percent very badly — a gloomy assessment by about two-thirds. Only 3 percent said it was going very well, and 27 percent said somewhat well. The rest did not know or had no opinion.

Asked how they would rate the president's handling of the situation in Iraq, 39 percent said poor and 25 percent said only fair, while 25 percent said good and 9 percent excellent.

USA Polling Group director Keith Nicholls said the Iraq Study Group's report may have reinforced the public's increasingly negative outlook on the war in Iraq.

While the survey showed most are unhappy with what is happening in Iraq, opinions are more divided over what should be done.

When asked if we need to stay in Iraq until a stable democracy is established, or whether we should withdraw our troops and let Iraqis solve their own problems, 47 percent said withdraw and 45 percent said stay.

Asked if the violence should be characterized as a civil war, 46 percent said it should not and 40 percent said it should, with 14 percent saying they don't know or had no answer.

The telephone survey of 427 adult residents of Alabama, conducted Dec. 11-12, had a margin of error of plus or minus 5 percentage points.

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Information from: Press-Register, http://www.al.com/mobileregister

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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