Guantanamo: Keep It Open But Try The Prisoners

January 26, 2011, 5:25 PM GMT+0

One area where public opinion has consistently differed with that of the Obama Administration is on what should be done with Guantanamo --- the U.S. military base in Cuba. The President promised to close the base; in the latest Economist/YouGov Poll, Americans want to keep it open, just as they did a year ago.

Some groups do agree with the President and would like to close down Guantanamo: pluralities of Democrats and those under 30 years old favor closing the base.

When it comes to assessing the President's handling of the issue, Americans are negative: 31% approve of his management of this issue, but 39% do not. A year ago, opinion was just about as negative.

But while Americans disagree with the President when it comes to keeping Guantanamo open, they partly agree with him when it comes to handling the prisoners there. By 64% to 18%, they would try the suspects now in the prison, and by 65% to 14% would release them if they are found innocent.

However, they do not want to have the Guantanamo prisoners tried in civilian courts. By more than two to one, they would leave that task to military tribunals.

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