A record proportion of Americans feel less safe now than they did before than Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, according to a new poll.
The NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey found that 47% of Americans feel less safe than they did before 9/11. And a record low, 26%, feel they are safer since 9/11.
The sobering results come with President Barack Obama set to address Americans in an address Wednesday night about one of their fears: the militant group Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS). Almost two-thirds of Americans think confronting the group is in the country’s best interests, according to the poll. A majority of Americans, 59%, have closely paid attention to the conflict the group is waging in Iraq and Syria, reading “a lot” of news coverage about the beheading of American journalists by ISIS. When asked if the U.S. military effort should be “limited to air strikes only,” 40% of Americans said yes, while 34% of Americans support combat troops on the ground.
The poll found a record low approval rating for Obama’s handling of foreign policy, at just 32%.
The survey of 1,000 registered voters was conducted Sept. 3-7 and has a margin of error of about 3 percentage points.