A Military Tribunal in Cuba. That is what Barack Obama called for in 2006 while he was in the Senate (see video above) and that is what voters said to Rasmussen in the latest poll released today.
Only 29% of American voters support President Obama’s decision to transfer Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSL) and his band of thieves to NY for a civilian trial. 51% prefer that KSL remain in Gitmo to be tried in a military (19% had no opinion).
Putting aside location for a moment, only 30% of Americans said suspected terrorists should have access to U.S. courts, while 54% favored military tribunals. But if they are going to have civilian trials most American voters feel that NY is the place. 58% of voters now are at least somewhat confident that New York City will be able to take care of itself when the trials are going on (only 20% are very confident of that fact). Thirty-eight percent (38%) are not very or not at all confident that New York will be safe during this period.
Most Republicans (72%) and Independents (56%) are against the move to a civilian court, a plurality of Democrats support the move (46%).
Previous polls have also shown that most Americans are opposed moving any of the Guantanamo prisoners to prisons in the United States out of safety concerns.
Over three-quarters of voters feel that terrorist suspects should not be given the same legal rights as US citizens (76%). Only 14% say the suspects should be given the rights of citizens.
Most voters do not want Khalid Shaikh Mohammed’s present home at Guantanamo Bay closed. Fifty-five percent (55%) of voters oppose closing that facility, and 48% think it is unlikely it will be closed by January as President Obama has pledged.
Seventy-two percent (72%) of Republicans and 56% of voters not affiliated with either major political party oppose trying the terrorist detainees in a civilian court. Democrats are more closely divided, with a plurality (46%) in favor of the administration’s decision to treat the cases as criminal matters for trial in a civilian court.
Sixty percent (60%) of the Political Class think the terrorists suspects should be tried in a civilian court, while the identical number (60%) of Mainstream Americans disagree.
Seventy-five percent (75%) of all voters say they have followed news stories about the decision to try the suspected terrorists in a civilian court at least somewhat closely. Thirty-nine percent (39%) say they have been following very closely. Only six percent (6%) are not following the news about the decision at all.
It comes down to this. President Obama’s move of the Terror Trial to NY is a thinly veiled political move. America understand it and are opposed to the move.