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U.S. Public Opinion on Torture, 2001–2009

  • Paul Gronke (a1), Darius Rejali (a1), Dustin Drenguis (a1), James Hicks (a1), Peter Miller (a2) and Bryan Nakayama (a1)...

Many journalists and politicians believe that during the Bush administration, a majority of Americans supported torture if they were assured that it would prevent a terrorist attack. As Mark Danner wrote in the April 2009 New York Review of Books, “Polls tend to show that a majority of Americans are willing to support torture only when they are assured that it will ‘thwart a terrorist attack.’” This view was repeated frequently in both left- and right-leaning articles and blogs, as well as in European papers (Sharrock 2008; Judd 2008; Koppelman 2009; Liberation 2008). There was a consensus, in other words, that throughout the years of the Bush administration, public opinion surveys tended to show a pro-torture American majority.

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William S. Cleveland 1979. “Robust Locally Weighted Regression and Smoothing Scatterplots.” Journal of the American Statistical Association 74: 829–36.

Tien-Tsung Lee . 2005. “The Liberal Media Myth Revisited: An Examination of Factors Influencing Media Bias.” Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media 49 (1): 543–64.

L. Ross , D. Greene , and P. House . 1977. “The False Consensus Phenomenon: An Attributional Bias in Self-Perception and Social Perception Processes.” Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 13 (3): 279301.

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PS: Political Science & Politics
  • ISSN: 1049-0965
  • EISSN: 1537-5935
  • URL: /core/journals/ps-political-science-and-politics
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