Michelle Malkin: Wrong
This is just too easy. Malkin grabs this Gallup poll and posts it for all to see.
– As you may know, since 2001, the United States has held people from other countries who are suspected of being terrorists at a detention facility in Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. Based on what you have heard or read, do you think the US should continue to operate this facility or do you think the US should close this facility and transfer the prisoners to other facilities?
Continue to operate: 58
Close facility: 36
No opinion: 6
– In general, do you approve or disapprove of the way the US is treating the prisoners being held at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba?
No opinion: 11
Quoth the Malkin: “Keep doing what you’re doing, Gitmo-bashers. It’s working wonders.”
Which is funny, because it is working wonders. Gallup has not polled this exact question before, but they asked a set of Guantanamo questions on Jan 25-27, 2002.
Based on what you have heard or read, would you consider the way the U.S. is treating the Taliban soldiers being held at the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba to be acceptable or unacceptable treatment, or don’t you know enough to say?
Acceptable – 72%
Unacceptable – 4
Don’t know enough to say – 24
Suppose a Taliban soldier were captured during war and held outdoors in an 8 foot by 8 foot cell, and when traveling from one location to another was blindfolded and had his hands bound. Would you consider that to be acceptable or unacceptable treatment?
Acceptable – 76%
Unacceptable – 20
No opinion – 4
So, not the same phrasing as the June 2005 poll, but along similar lines – do you want to stick it to the prisoners at Gitmo? The percentage of people who say they do has fallen from 72%-76% to 52%-58%.
ABC tried out a different wording with a poll in September 2003.
Please tell me if you support or oppose the federal government … holding suspected terrorists without trial at the U.S. (United States) military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Support – 65%
Oppose – 28
No opinion – 7
Look, it’s a sucker’s bet to take a poll showing a slim majority of people saying “keep Guatanamo open” and say that shows “Gitmo-bashers” are flailing and losing ground. Support for all extreme imprisonment or interrogation measures has fallen since 9/11, and will continue falling unless there’s another attack on US soil.
I suppose you could argue that it’s a loser for Democrats to hammer the Gitmo issue, but Malkin’s take is simply wrong.