Most Americans think the end of the U.S. presence in Afghanistan makes no difference on our safety from terrorism
New ABC News-Ipsos poll finds the public gives Biden poor marks on Afghanistan and immigration, more positive on COVID and infrastructure
Washington, DC, August 29, 2021
A new ABC News-Ipsos poll, fielded August 27-28, finds that the majority of the American public does not believe the withdrawal from Afghanistan will have a significant impact on American security from terrorism. This comes as just under a quarter of Americans describe themselves as ‘very worried’ about the possibility of a major terrorist attack in the United States. Despite this, large majorities of Americans believe U.S. troops should stay in Afghanistan until all Americans, and all Afghans who aided the U.S. are evacuated.
Americans’ views of President Biden’s handling of Afghanistan have turned sharply negative since before the fall of Kabul in late July. However, evaluations of Biden’s performance on crime and gun violence have improved slightly over the last month, potentially as media and public focus has been pulled abroad. On other topics such as immigration (majority disapprove) or the pandemic and economic recovery (majority approve), public sentiment has not meaningfully changed.
About the Study
This ABC News/Ipsos poll was conducted August 27 to August 28, 2021 by Ipsos using the probability-based KnowledgePanel®. This poll is based on a nationally representative probability sample of 513 general population adults age 18 or older.
The survey was conducted using KnowledgePanel, the largest and most well-established online probability-based panel that is representative of the adult US population. Our recruitment process employs a scientifically developed addressed-based sampling methodology using the latest Delivery Sequence File of the USPS – a database with full coverage of all delivery points in the US. Households invited to join the panel are randomly selected from all available households in the U.S. Persons in the sampled households are invited to join and participate in the panel. Those selected who do not already have internet access are provided a tablet and internet connection at no cost to the panel member. Those who join the panel and who are selected to participate in a survey are sent a unique password-protected log-in used to complete surveys online. As a result of our recruitment and sampling methodologies, samples from KnowledgePanel cover all households regardless of their phone or internet status and findings can be reported with a margin of sampling error and projected to the general population.
The study was conducted in both English and Spanish. The data were weighted to adjust for gender by age, race/ethnicity, education, Census region, metropolitan status, household income, and party identification. The demographic benchmarks came from 2019 American Community Survey (ACS) from the US Census Bureau. Party ID benchmarks are from recent ABC News/Washington Post telephone polls. The weighting categories were as follows:
- Gender (Male, Female) by Age (18–29, 30–44, 45–59, and 60+)
- Race/Hispanic Ethnicity (White Non-Hispanic, Black Non-Hispanic, Other or 2+ Races, Non-Hispanic, Hispanic)
- Education (High School graduate or less, Some College, Bachelor and beyond)
- Census Region (Northeast, Midwest, South, West)
- Metropolitan status (Metro, non-Metro)
- Household Income (Under $25,000, $25,000-$49,999, $50,000-$74,999, $75,000-$99,999, $100,000-$149,999, $150,000+)
- Party ID (Democrat, Republican, Independent, Something else)
The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 4.9 percentage points at the 95% confidence level, for results based on the entire sample of adults. The margin of sampling error takes into account the design effect, which was 1.26. The margin of sampling error is higher and varies for results based on sub-samples. In our reporting of the findings, percentage points are rounded off to the nearest whole number. As a result, percentages in a given table column may total slightly higher or lower than 100%. In questions that permit multiple responses, columns may total substantially more than 100%, depending on the number of different responses offered by each respondent.
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