51 percent disapprove of Biden decision to send cluster bombs to Ukraine: poll

President Joe Biden, second from left, speaks during a meeting with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky, left, on the sidelines of the NATO summit in Vilnius, Lithuania, Wednesday, July 12, 2023. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Just more than half of respondents in a recent poll said they disapprove of President Biden’s recent decision to send cluster bombs to Ukraine. 

In a new Quinnipiac poll, 51 percent of respondents said they don’t approve of Biden’s decision to send cluster munitions to Ukraine, while 39 percent said they approve of his decision. 

The question posed to respondents stated that Biden made the decision “despite concerns from human rights groups that they endanger civilians,” before asking respondents whether they approve or disapprove. 

More Democrats than Republicans said they approve of Biden’s decision – with Democratic approval at 52 percent, and GOP approval at 30 percent. Republicans were more likely to disapprove of the decision — with 64 percent of Republican respondents saying they disapproved of the decision and 36 percent of Democratic respondents saying they disapproved of Biden’s choice.

Cluster munitions are highly controversial weapons containing multiple bomblets that disperse over a wide area, making them effective at targeting formations of enemy armies and tanks, but also posing a risk to civilians. 

Ukraine has long asked for cluster munitions, which are banned by more than 100 countries – though not by the United States, Ukraine, nor Russia. 

Biden announced what he called a “difficult” but “necessary” decision earlier this month to send Ukraine cluster munitions. Ukraine recently launched a counteroffensive against Russia to take back its land, but U.S. and Ukrainian officials have said troops are using up artillery munitions at a rapid pace. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said the cluster bombs are critical to defeating Russia in the counteroffensive.

The same Quinnipiac survey found 64 percent of Americans thought supporting Ukraine was in the United States’ best interest, while 29 percent said they did not. One third of Americans said they think the United States was doing too much to help Ukraine, 18 percent said they think the U.S. is doing too little to help, and 41 percent said the U.S. was doing the right amount, the same poll indicated.

The poll surveyed 2,056 U.S. adults from July 13 to July 17. It had a margin of error of +/- 2.2 percentage points. The surveys are based on random samples of adults using “random digit dialing” to conduct live interviews by landlines and cell phones.

Tags cluster munitions Joe Biden Poll Russia-Ukraine war

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