Poll: Majority of Americans back Trump’s Syria strikes

Most Americans approved of President Trump’s decision last week to launch airstrikes against Syria — but few would support U.S. military action beyond them, according to a CBS News poll published Monday.

According to the survey of more than 1,000 adults, conducted April 7-9, 57 percent of Americans approved of Thursday’s airstrikes against Syrian military targets. The strikes were in response to the suspected chemical attack by the Syrian government that killed dozens of civilians there, including children.

An overwhelming percentage of Republicans (84 percent) approved of the airstrikes, and a slim majority (52 percent) of independents supported the move, while most Democrats (53 percent) disapproved of them.

A YouGov/Huffington Post survey further showed 51 percent support for the U.S. airstrikes, with 32 percent opposed and 17 percent uncertain.

Slideshow: U.S. attacks Syrian air base

But the polling data also has a note of caution for the Trump administration. While most Americans supported Trump’s decision to attack Syria through the air, 69 percent believe the president needs to get authorization from Congress before taking further action, according to the CBS poll — and just 18 percent would favor full U.S. military involvement, including ground troops, in Syria. Nearly the same percentage (15 percent) say they want no U.S. involvement in Syria whatsoever.

On Friday, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told the U.N. Security Council that Trump was “prepared to do more in Syria.” She reiterated that sentiment Sunday.

“I was trying to give warning and notice to the members of the Security Council and the international community that he won’t stop here,” Haley said on CNN. “If he needs to do more, he will do more.”

The CBS survey found Trump’s approval rating has edged up as a result of the airstrikes. According to the poll, 43 percent approve of the job Trump is doing, compared to 49 percent who disapprove.

The increase in job approval was driven mainly by independents, CBS said. Just 34 percent of independents approved of the job Trump was doing before the airstrikes. Now 42 percent of independents approve of Trump’s handling of the presidency.

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