May 19th, 2009
01:00 PM ET
9 years ago

Poll: Democrats and Repulicans agree on photos

WASHINGTON (CNN) - It isn't often that Democrats and Republicans see eye to eye. But on the thorny question of whether photos of U.S. military personnel allegedly abusing Iraqi prisoners should be released, a new national poll suggests Democrats and Republicans appear to agree.

Nearly three out of four Americans questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Tuesday do not believe the U.S. government should release the photos.

The poll suggests that 87 percent of Republicans are against the public release of the photos, as are 62 percent of Democrats. Three out of four independent voters would also prefer for the photos to stay under wraps.

"Obama has been getting some pressure from the liberal wing of his party to release the photos, but six in ten liberals in the poll say that the photos should not be made publicly available," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.

Last week, President Obama reversed course on the issue. The White House now says it no longer supports the release of the photos, which allegedly show prisoners allegedly being abused by U.S. personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan.

President Barack Obama said Wednesday that he told government lawyers to object to a court-ordered release of Defense Department photos showing alleged abuse of detainees because the release could affect the safety of U.S. troops and "inflame anti-American opinion."

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted Thursday through Sunday, with 1,010 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Filed under: CNN Polls
soundoff (51 Responses)
  1. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    You wouldn't wanna see photos of Jeffery Daulmer's victims, now would you? So, why the ghoulish interest in scenes of torture?

    No benefit can come of this.

    May 19, 2009 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  2. Adele

    So let's hide our sins under the carpet ! What a change !

    May 19, 2009 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  3. Enlightened Voter

    Of course the rethuglicans agree, they don't want the world to see how disgusting they are and how bad they broke the law!

    May 19, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  4. renea

    Will it make a difference if the photos be shown anyway? So if its not going to make a difference why show them.

    May 19, 2009 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  5. Monrob

    I can understand that the photos can stir the Middle East, but how can we fix a wrong if it is not exposed?

    Release the photos. And wasn't that a court ruling? Obama is turning into an intelligent Bush.

    May 19, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  6. Dutch/Bad Newz,VA

    It's one thing to want transparency, but not at the risk of our troops. The President made a wise move by not releasing those photos.

    May 19, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  7. Bryan S

    C'mon.....Typo in the a little more intelligence

    May 19, 2009 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  8. jaye

    Those pictures should be plastered on every internet site in the world – let the world see what Bush and Cheney did to shame our country.
    Maybe the republicans can explain why they don't want the photos exposed...all republicans are saying that the torture was okay, so then why don't they want the photos exposed???
    The republicans are a shameful bunch of hypocrits!

    May 19, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  9. Jon in CA


    The ACLU was founded by avowed Communist, Robert Baldwin. Does ANYONE really think the ACLU and their apologists really care about the safety of our troops??


    They are more concerned about terrorists than our troops! Ever heard of an ACLU lawsuit on behalf of US soldiers??

    Didnt think so.

    May 19, 2009 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  10. Darth Vadik, CA

    NO, lets not take responsibility about our country's actions (our countrymens actions) and let people imagine what's in those photos. The arab people in the middle east imagination (I say this with no disrespect to any arab people) is so colorfull.

    Heck I heard rumors about some of those pictures, and I live in Cali. Can you imagine what the Arabs in the ME are thinking? Is it really that bad to admit mistakes, punish Bush and his cronies and move on?

    May 19, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  11. RH

    You're screwed either way at this point. Who can say whether releasing photos would inflame things more than withholding photos known by all to exist? I'm sure terrorists and innocents alike have got a fairly good idea of what they depict.

    May 19, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  12. willow

    Thank God somebody listened. Releasing the photos would do nothing to help anyone, it would just fuel the fire against the US.

    May 19, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  13. Stacy from Leesburg, VA

    I am fairly moderate, but I think the photos should be released. I think the whole ugly situation should be laid out for the world to view to remind all of us what happens when we allow our governments to work in secret. Folks, if it can happen in Iraq, it darn well can happen in the United States.

    May 19, 2009 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  14. dominican mama 4 Obama

    Gee, let me see, his detractors swear that this man is just "all about him"; that he doesn't want bi-partisanship, nor makes it possible; that it is his way or the highway (hmmm, that one sounded familiar..); and yet apparently 87% of Reps. should be thrilled at him reversing his decision to make the photographs public. I happenned to have been amongst the 62% of Dems. that did not want the photographs published. Just goes to show that you can love your President and not necessarily be an out-of-work, kool-aid drinking, uneducated, public assistance receiving moron like some of you Reps. insist on characterizing us democrats.

    Any man can make a mistake, but it takes a bigger man to admit to it and reverse his decision. He has, let's move on.

    May 19, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  15. lefty

    I agree with not releasing the photos, but I insist that those who are responsible for the bashing of America's integrity by justifying torture be prosecuted.

    May 19, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  16. DaBird

    Only the left wing nuts and ACLU would want them released and endanger our troops. I forgot college professers who live in a fantasy world.

    May 19, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  17. Mississippi Mike

    If you are a lawmaker, why would you want these photos released? No on who loves their country wants to see the damage that photos like these would cause.

    May 19, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  18. Gary SC

    Oh my God
    Are you listening to this fool Steele. He shows more hatred than the whole Rep party. You are an idiot. Turn him off CNN.
    This man has spewed more hate in the last 20 minutes than anyone I have ever heard.

    May 19, 2009 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  19. S Callahan

    Well, there really is a rainbow at the end of every argument.
    It serves not useful purpose to release the photos...we know things were done's time to make amens and do the right things and let go of the wrongs. Nice artilce.

    May 19, 2009 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  20. Texas Teacher

    Excuse me while I change channels from the unbiased CNN to any other station who is NOT giving GOP Steele a forum for his nonsense and lies!

    May 19, 2009 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  21. Zac, Atlanta

    If these photos endager the lives of US troops, then maybe the Bush admin DoD should have thought of that BEFORE authorizing such shenanigans.

    May 19, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  22. history repeats

    this doesnt make sense

    May 19, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  23. ketrout

    If there is nothing to hide,why not release the photos??

    I don't believe that it has anything to do with "National Security"! It is just another issue that when Obama says more trancparency, is another FLIP/FLOP!

    May 19, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  24. Mari( maybe one of my comments will be posted)

    That's interesting, at our home, we believe the photos NEED to be released so that Americans are CLEAR on what was done in our name!

    May 19, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  25. S.S., MD

    I am a supporter of Pres. Obama, question is what is there to hide? The past eight years this country have seen everything that's connected to the Middle East, burning of American contractors, beheading of Mr. Pearl, detainees who was ordered by the W.H. clan carried out by the U.S. military to disrobed & express sadistic action upon these detainees, now former Sec. of Defense Rumsfeld, & Bush encouraged Biblical scriptures, to prove WHAT?

    May 19, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
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