public perception of bush deception taking hold
A recent poll finds that a majority of Americans now believe the President at least "stretched the truth" to urge support for his war on Iraq.
WASHINGTON (AFP) - For the first time since the beginning of the war in Iraq, a solid majority of Americans believe the Bush administration either "stretched the truth" about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction or told outright lies, according to a new opinion survey.
The poll by the University of Maryland found that 52 percent of respondents said they believed President George W. Bush and his aides were "stretching the truth, but not making false statements" about Iraqi president Saddam Hussein's chemical, biological and nuclear programs.
Another 10 percent said US officials were presenting Congress, the American public and the international community "evidence they knew was false," indicated the survey which was made public Tuesday.
...Similarly, 56 percent of those polled believed the US government stretched the truth or made outright false statements about Hussein's ties to al-Qaeda.
Only 32 percent still cling to the notion that the government was being "fully truthful" about Iraqi weapons. (If memory serves me right, this figure roughly corresponds to the proportion of hardcore Republican voters.)
I suspect this trend will change is some feeble discovery proves, for once, to have merit. Perhaps the President's repeated hyping of other discoveries ("We've found them") will prompte appropriate public skepticism, but it's vital that patriotic Americans not allow war supporters to define the question as "if any weapons are found, Bush was telling the truth." The question is, did Bush have the proof he said he did when he was urging the nation toward war. The question is, can he provide evidence, right now, for all of his statments. Considering that we've already looked where we thought we'd find them and come up empty, the answer, of course, is no.
(via Daily Kos)