WASHINGTON (CNN) - As the Senate nears a crucial vote over a new nuclear arms treaty with Russia, according to a new national poll nearly three-quarters of all Americans say senators should approve the accord.
A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Tuesday also indicates that a majority says that Moscow would live up to its obligations if the START treaty is approved.
See the full results after the jump:
Seventy-three percent of people questioned in the poll say the Senate should approve the nuclear treaty, with 24 percent saying senators should reject the accord.
The numbers are in-line with an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll released last week.
According to the CNN survey, 86 percent of Democrats and 75 percent of independent voters say that lawmakers should approve the START treaty. Fifty percent of Republicans say the accord should be approved, with 45 percent saying senators should reject the treaty.
Senate debate on a new nuclear arms treaty with Russia intensified Monday, with Democratic supporters touting the backing of military leaders for the pact while Republican opponents used to Cold War terminology to portray it as a threat to national security.
The Senate could vote Tuesday to invoke cloture, a necessary procedural step to end debate and set up a vote, with a possible final vote on the accord Wednesday.
The Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, known as New START, resumes inspections of each country's nuclear arsenals while limiting each nation to 1,550 warheads and 700 launchers.
The poll indicates that 56 percent of the public says Russia will live up to its share of the agreement, if the accord is approved, with four in ten saying Moscow will not live up to its obligations.
"That's a switch from 2002, when the Bush administration had negotiated a similar treaty," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Only 47 percent of the U.S. public believed back then that Russia would live up to its share of that agreement."
Some Senate Republicans have raised concerns about the treaty's impact on U.S. plans to develop a missile defense system, and according to the survey, missile defense is extremely popular with Republicans nationwide. But a small majority of Independents and six in ten Democrats think a missile defense system is not a good idea.
The poll indicates that the number of Americans who are worried about the possibility of a nuclear war is relatively low.
"That may remove the need for swift action on the new START treaty in the minds of many Americans," says Holland.
Thirty-six percent say they worry a lot about the possibility of a nuclear war.
"That's low by historic standards," adds Holland. "In the early 1980s six in ten said they worried a lot about nuclear war. It's also low in comparison to current concerns about economic conditions, unemployment and the deficit."
The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted December 17-19, with 1,008 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.
Check out CNN's new Polling Center, which provides the most comprehensive polling data covering national questions and the top 2010 election races of any news organization in the political landscape.
- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report
–Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn