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Iraq Is a Drag

"Just how much of a drag is Iraq politically for President Bush and Republicans?" That's the question I look at in my column today, but here's a clue: according to polling data from the Washington Post/ABC News, in October, 2002 Republicans held a 27-point advantage over Democrats (58-31) when voters were asked which party they trusted to do a better job on handling the situation in Iraq. Today the GOP is running a 7-point defecit to Democrats (42-49) on the issue.

Even worse for the GOP, over the same period of time a thirty-five point advantage on the issue of handling the war on terrorism has completely evaporated, leaving Republicans dead even with Democrats. Other polls show similar results on questions about "national security." This may or may not translate into GOP losses at the ballot box in November, but it is certainly ominous stuff.