A majority of Americans say protecting the United States from security threats is the major reason behind President Trump’s executive order on travel, according to a new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
Six in 10 say protecting the country from security threats is a main motivation behind the so called “travel ban,” which would temporarily ban most travelers from six Muslim-majority countries. Half say a major goal of the executive order is to prevent Muslims from coming to the U.S. And a majority of Americans support the courts’ actions blocking President Trump’s ban on travel.
Views on the travel ban are highly partisan. Eighty-seven percent of Republicans say the order is trying to protect the country from security threats, while 41 percent of Democrats agree. Sixty-four percent of Democrats say the order is trying to prevent Muslims from entering the country while just 34 percent of Republicans agree. Further, 73 percent of Republicans say the courts are improperly interfering with the president’s authority, while 82 percent of Democrats support the courts’ actions.
When it comes to the powers of the president, few support granting the office more power to solve the country’s problems. Twenty-two percent support giving the president more power at the expense of the power of Congress and the courts to help solve the country’s problems and 58 percent oppose such expansion of power.
The nationwide poll was conducted June 8-11, 2017 using the AmeriSpeak® Panel, the probability-based panel of NORC at the University of Chicago. Online and telephone interviews using landlines and cell phones were conducted with 1,068 adults. The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 4.1 percentage points.