Polls released this weekend show that a majority of Americans stand behind Bush's pledge to retaliate against Usama Bin Laden or any other terrorists behind Tuesday's attacks in Washington and New York.
A Los Angeles Times poll released Sunday finds 69 percent of people surveyed saying they strongly support military action. A New York Times/CBS poll also released Sunday found even greater support, with 85 percent saying they backed U.S. military action against those responsible for the attacks.
A vast majority of respondents to both polls say they support military retaliation against Afghanistan — even if it means civilian casualties — if it's determined the country's rulers are harboring bin Laden.
In the New York Times poll, those who lived through World War II and the wars in Korea and Vietnam were the least likely to back military action.
Americans also are rallying behind President Bush. Respondents to the Los Angeles Times poll give him an approval rating of 77 percent, while 84 percent of those in the New York Times/CBS poll — including 55 percent of Democrats — said they approved of Bush's handling of the matter. This approval rating is up from 50 percent just over a month ago.
The Los Angeles Times surveyed 1,561 people nationwide by telephone. The margin of error is three points. The New York Times/CBS poll surveyed 959 adults nationwide and was conducted Thursday and Friday. It had a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points.
An ABC News/Washington Post poll released Friday gave Bush an 86 percent approval rating, with nearly 70 percent saying they supported military action — even if it meant a long war with heavy U.S. casualties.
Both polls found a willingness on the part of respondents to change their lifestyles or domestic policies of the country in the wake of the attacks. The Los Angeles Times poll found 84 percent saying visas for foreign students and other visitors should have tougher restrictions, and the New York Times/CBS poll found people willing to sacrifice some freedoms in return for higher levels of safety.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.