Poll: Majority say CIA assassinations 'justified,' trusted more than Congress

By |
Congress,Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets,CIA,Polls,Dianne Feinstein

In a significant show of support for the embattled CIA, twice as many Americans say they trust the spy agency more than Congress, and a remarkable majority say that CIA assassinations are “sometimes justified.”

In a new Economist/YouGov poll, 54 percent said that killings are sometimes justified while 24 percent said they are never justified and 22 percent said they didn't know.

“Republicans, Democrats, liberals and conservatives agree,” said the new poll.

In very good news for the agency under fire by Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein for allegedly removing files from a computer network congressional staffers were using to probe the CIA's enhanced interrogation practices, more said they trust the agency than Congress “to do what's right for the country.”

While 40 percent said they trust neither, 24 percent said they trust the CIA to do what’s right and just 10 percent chose Congress.

In addition, said the poll, “Nearly all groups say they trust the CIA to make the right decisions. But some are more suspicious. Forty percent or more of senior citizens, African-Americans, Westerners, liberals, and those with family incomes over $100,000 don’t trust the CIA.”

In fact, with the congressional approval rating at a near low of 10 percent, being tested against Capitol Hill helps to make the look CIA pretty good. Some 52 percent said they had a somewhat to very favorable opinion of the agency. “The CIA may be insulated from criticism coming from a part of government - the U.S. Congress -- with a terrible reputation with the public,” said the poll.

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at pbedard@washingtonexaminer.com.