- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 5, 2015

A majority of U.S. voters now believe the United States is less safe than it was before the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, according to a Fox News poll.

Fifty-three percent of voters believe the country is less safe today, compared to 38 percent who think it’s safer.

Earlier Fox surveys between 2010 and 2013 showed a majority of voters believed the country was safer than before 9/11, and a plurality of voters — 49 percent to 39 percent — believed the U.S. was safer in a poll released last March.

In September, a narrow plurality — 45 percent to 43 percent — believed the U.S. was less safe than before 9/11.

Fifty-four percent of those polled in the new survey also think the Obama administration is more interested in downplaying the threat from the Islamic State terrorist group, compared to 36 percent who think the administration is more interested in stopping the threat from the group, also known as ISIS or ISIL.

More than 70 percent favor increasing U.S. airstrikes and using drone strikes to combat the group, and 52 percent favor sending a limited number of U.S. ground troops to Iraq and Syria. The authorization for use of military force President Obama recently sent to Congress would allow for ground troops to be used in limited roles.

Fifty-one percent of voters, however, oppose sending a significant number of U.S. ground troops to Iraq and Syria. By a 46 percent to 44 percent margin, voters favor providing weapons to countries fighting Islamic extremists, including Jordan and Iraq.

Nearly two-thirds say that in the war against terrorism, it feels like Islamic extremists are making gains, compared to 26 percent who say it feels like they’re losing ground.

Six in 10 also say they think the president is a weak negotiator with foreign leaders.

The survey of 1,011 registered voters was taken from March 1-3 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

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