Rasmussen: 58% prefer the Cheney option on EunuchBomber

posted at 1:14 pm on December 31, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

I just call it the Cheney Option because it recalls a time when we treated terrorists as unlawful combatants rather than defendants.  Apparently, a healthy majority of Americans agree with that approach.  Rasmussen surveyed likely voters about how they would like to see Umar Abdulmutallab interrogated, and 58% said bring on the drips:

Fifty-eight percent (58%) of U.S. voters say waterboarding and other aggressive interrogation techniques should be used to gain information from the terrorist who attempted to bomb an airliner on Christmas Day.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 30% oppose the use of such techniques, and another 12% are not sure.

Men and younger voters are more strongly supportive of the aggressive interrogation techniques than women and those who are older. Republicans and voters not affiliated with either major party favor their use more than Democrats.

Seventy-one percent (71%) of all voters think the attempt by the Nigerian Muslim to blow up the airliner as it landed in Detroit should be investigated by military authorities as a terrorist act. Only 22% say it should be handled by civilian authorities as a criminal act, as is currently the case.

Let’s look inside the numbers, where the responses get very, very interesting.  Rasmussen’s analysis says men are more likely than women to break out the waterboard, but a majority of women (54%) favor its use on Abdulmutallab, too.  Older voters may be less likely to approve of its use, but it still wins a plurality among 50-64 year olds (49%) and senior citizens (48%), outstripping opposition by double digits in both cases.  Democrats give waterboarding a thin plurality (43/41), while 60% of independents favor its use.  A majority of self-described moderates (51%) favor it as well.

So far, the response to using the criminal system is almost uniformly negative, with 71% saying that the military should be handling the issue.  Women are more likely than men (75/66) to have that reaction.  Among age demographics, the lowest percentage agreeing was 67% among the 50-64 demo.  Sixty percent of Democrats want it handled by the military, with only 30% agreeing with the Obama administration.  Even 50% of self-described liberals want the military handling Abdulmutallab, not the FBI.  Only among the political class does Obama gain majority support, 60/33 in favor of civilian handling of the terrorist.

In this case, though, I do find myself at least acknowledging that the FBI is a legitimate choice.  After all, the terrorist was detained in the US, and his actions took place in American airspace.  I’d prefer that the military handle it, but a case can be made for civilian processes.  As far as the waterboard is concerned, I’d prefer other methods get used.  I doubt that the EunuchBomber has much information on other plots, unlike a Khalid Sheikh Mohammed or Ramzi Binalshibh.  However, he shouldn’t be allowed to lawyer up before we have a chance to find out.

What this poll shows is that the American public has awakened once again to the terrorist threat — and that the Obama administration is badly out of step with voters on security issues.


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…..and that the Obama administration is badly out of step with voters on security issues.

Big surprise there….no? /sarcasm off

tgharris on December 31, 2009 at 4:49 PM

Only among the political class does Obama gain majority support, 60/33 in favor of civilian handling of the terrorist

No surprises here. The political class is tone deaf as usual.

chemman on December 31, 2009 at 5:49 PM

As far as the waterboard is concerned, I’d prefer other methods get used.

Unless you mean other methods that would hurt him more, I don’t understand why you would not want to use the greatest interrogation method ever created. It’s as effective as any and does no harm. It’s a freaking miracle that I think was created by God as a backdoor password to fight evil. Praise him and accept his gifts.

bagoh20 on December 31, 2009 at 5:51 PM

This is just too simple…

We know who he is, as he was caught in the act…we have the evidence and we have him in custody.

Now…All we need is a judge to sentence him and 6 men for a firing squad.

No need for a long protracted trial or 20 years of appeals and imprisonment.

Just stand him up against the wall and shoot the SOB !

DoctorDentons on December 31, 2009 at 5:59 PM

Do we have to pay for his medical treatment and penile amputation? Would BarryCare come in on time to take care of criminal aliens?

bayview on December 31, 2009 at 6:20 PM

This administration does not protect us. We need to wake up soon, or die, literally.

Schadenfreude on December 31, 2009 at 6:31 PM

People who are not American Citizens, who do not have valid passport visas to be in the United States of America should not be granted automatic rights of citizens. You might want to try and frame the argument around the idea that these rights are given by a higher power and are inalienable, but that is not what the constitution says. We do not even give legal enemy combatants the extent of rights that our citizens are granted, so why should we grant illegal enemy combatants a higher degree of rights than those who would fight us on as close to a fair battlefield as is possible in war? This man is not a citizen, he is not an enemy combatant, he is an illegal enemy combatant who is breaking every covenant that allows modern governments to be able to negotiate and if needed wage wars without endangering lawful innocent civilians. Thus, this person deserves to turned over to a lower level of rights granted enforcement apparatus, such as military and CIA and coercive interrogation should be placed on him if it is deemed that he is not willing to give full details of what he knows about our illegal enemy combatants and their plans. So, I agree with the 71% and 58% of Americans here.

If this person where a Citizen of the United States of America or was a lawful holder of a valid passport visa, I would grant you that this person would be fully be illegible for full rights. A stipulation is that a lawfully valid passport visa would require that the application of said visa was in fact for the specified purpose of the visit to the United States of America, thus if the real reason for someone to file for a visa is invalid the visa itself is no longer a lawfully valid one, thus negating the right to American court systems.

This in no way removes any rights that you have been granted under the Constitution of the United States of America.

While you say let the FBI handle this, I think it would be better to have one of our non domestic branches handle it, either military or CIA, as allowing the FBI to have extra constitutional powers may cause a level of corruption to leak into the FBI consciousness.

astonerii on December 31, 2009 at 6:57 PM

Happy New Year Ed, AP and MM. Confusion and consternation to our enemies. Success to American military serving overseas and the good guys in November.

The scrotum bomber is a common enemy of humanity. That he still lives is an insult.
And bullets are reserved for traitors or other high crimes. Hanging or walk the plank for pirates or highwaymen.

Caststeel on December 31, 2009 at 7:17 PM

Rasmussen: 58% prefer the Cheney option on EunuchBomber
Is this what they’re calling him now? What is that, a play on Unabomber?

Personally, I prefer Underwear Bomber. Or Gotchie Bomber.

UltimateBob on December 31, 2009 at 2:23 PM

How about Wedgie-Bomber?

AubieJon on December 31, 2009 at 8:08 PM

I like the KGB option: Take him away, never to be seen again. Interpret that as you wish.

n0doz on December 31, 2009 at 8:18 PM

JUST DO IT!

Captain America on December 31, 2009 at 8:38 PM

CALL FOR ACTION!!!!!

The website ‘The Post and Email’ has recently begun a drive to petition the state of Hawaii for Zero’s BC.

As a result of this petition US ISP’s have decided to stop offering their services to the Post & Email.

The Post & Email needs $10K in donations by Jan 6th to fund a move to an overseas secure dedicated server. If they do not meet this goal they will have to cease existence.

Please spread this message, and donate if you can.

Mr Purple on December 31, 2009 at 8:47 PM

Please use the term “PANTY BOMBER” when refering to this demented jerk. He deserves to be emasculated in print as well as castrated and cauterized in the flesh. It may be that his friends will think about that condition and their life in the hereafter and find another line of work.

Gandalf on December 31, 2009 at 9:43 PM

Gandalf on December 31, 2009 at 9:43 PM

The irony in all of this stuff about Abdulmutallab is due to his self-inflicted injuries he may well have to spend the rest of his life wearing Depends.

coldwarrior on December 31, 2009 at 10:22 PM

Would Obamacare cover hormone therapy?

miron on December 31, 2009 at 11:55 PM

More terrorists have been harmed by bombs going off in their underwear than by being waterboarded.

DarkKnight3565 on December 31, 2009 at 1:22 PM

That’s a bumper sticker if I ever saw one.

boomer on January 1, 2010 at 12:23 AM

We’re talking about a man who set his own Nads on fire, fully intending to blow said Nads off, ALL for the glory of Allah. Waterboarding? I say pour gas on him and give him another match. But that’s just me.

Losers are always defeated by their OWN dogma, not the other guys. My bullets are soaked in pigs blood and lard, so bring it on. Mmmmm Bacon, the smell of VICTORY!

Pole-Cat on January 1, 2010 at 12:36 AM

Gandalf on December 31, 2009 at 9:43 PM
The irony in all of this stuff about Abdulmutallab is due to his self-inflicted injuries he may well have to spend the rest of his life wearing Depends.

Paid for by you and I.

proudteadrinker on January 1, 2010 at 12:54 AM

I just call it the Cheney Option because it recalls a time when we treated terrorists as unlawful combatants rather than defendants.

Richard Reid was not treated as an unlawful combatant by Cheney’s Admin.

He was tried and sentenced in a federal court. Why would the military have anything to do with this?

lexhamfox on January 1, 2010 at 3:14 AM

the Obama administration is badly out of step with voters on security issues.

And they’re in-step on which issues?

Richard Reid was not treated as an unlawful combatant by Cheney’s Admin.

He was tried and sentenced in a federal court. Why would the military have anything to do with this?

lexhamfox on January 1, 2010 at 3:14 AM

Two wrongs don’t make a right, dude. I finally understand the quote “stupid is, as stupid does”.

Squiggy on January 1, 2010 at 8:57 AM

Please come home, Dick Cheney. I miss you. Our lives may depend on you.

We are toast in current hands.

manateespirit on January 1, 2010 at 10:06 AM

astonerii on December 31, 2009 at 6:57 PM

I agree!!

If an attacker is a citizen, read him his rights and prosecute him for crimes and/or treason.

If an attacker is NOT a citizen, it is stupid and inappropriate to treat him as if he was. Non-citizens have NOT agreed to the provisions of our Constitution, and to grant them any rights whatsoever under our Constitution makes a mockery of the concept of “citizenship.”

Send non-citizens to the military for disposition: that is precisely what the military is for!!! Let the military interrogate terrorists by any means necessary, sort them into appropriate piles, and dispose of them.

Citizenship is a contract between two parties, and is accompanied by responsibilities as well as rights. The government should not be in the illogical and foolish position of trying to force citizenship upon enemies who have already rejected it.

landlines on January 1, 2010 at 7:42 PM

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