- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 29, 2014

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

So how’s President Obama doing with the Ukraine matter? Americans give him him mixed reviews on the ever unfolding situation that seems to hover between provocative political theater and dangerous sabre rattling.

Just over a third - 35 percent - say Mr. Obama’s response to Russia is “not tough enough”. The sentiment has a definite partisan divide:  55 percent of Republicans, 23 percent of Democrats and 33 percent of independents agree.

So says a Pew Research Center/USA Today poll of 1,501 U.S. adults conducted April 23-27.

Another 40 percent overall say the president’s response to the situation is “about right”; 22 percent of Republicans, 56 percent of Democrats and 39 percent of independents agree. Only 6 percent say Mr. Obama is “too tough” - a sentiment that all three political persuasions pretty well agree on.

But a fair amount of respondents - 20 percent overall - simply don’t know what to think or are undecided. This finding also goes across the board.

Few are interested in even limited military engagement in Ukraine.

The survey found that 62 percent overall oppose sending military arms or supplies to Ukraine; 55 percent of Republicans, 67 percent of Democrats and 63 percent of independents agree.

Americans are more comfortable with sanctions, though: 53 percent overall favor increasing sanctions on Russia; 55 percent of Republicans, 58 percent of Democrats and 48 percent of independents agree.

And whether or not the Russia/Ukraine matter signals that a new Cold War is underway, Americans are paying attention. The poll found that 67 percent of the respondents overall say the events in Russia and Ukraine are important; 77 percent of Republicans, 69 percent of Democrats and 61 percent of independents agree.

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