More than half of Americans polled have said that they no longer believe the nonstop lies coming out of mainstream media and consider their reliance on “anonymous sources” to release information leaked out of the White House to be a clear danger to our country’s national security–to the point of committing treason.
According to the latest Rasmussen Reports survey, 53% of all Likely U.S. Voters consider the leaking of classified information to the media to be an act of treason. Thirty percent disagree, while 18% are undecided.
Many voters felt the same way in 2010, after WikiLeaks’ released top secret U.S. government data related to the war in Afghanistan and other defense and foreign policy issues.
However, the data is skewed along party lines, with 73% of Republicans calling current leaks against the Trump administration treasonous, while only 36% of Democrats feel the same. Those voters not affiliated with either party “agree by a 50% to 27% margin that the leaks are an act of treason.”
In February, 58% of voters said that the leakers should be prosecuted.
When voters were asked whether media outlets that release leaked government information are providing a public service or hurting national security, 47% of all voters said that they’re hurting the country, which is greatly reduced from 72% six years ago. “Thirty-four percent (34%) say the media is providing a public service instead, up from 14%. A sizable 19% are not sure.”
The poll found that “56% of GOP voters and 49% of unaffiliateds believe the media is hurting national security when it publishes government secrets, but Democrats by a 42% to 36% margin say it is doing a public service.”
Meanwhile, back in 2010, 61% of Democratic voters said the media was hurting national security by releasing secret government information, and 84% of Republicans and 72% of unaffiliated voters agreed.
The majority of voters, regardless of age, agree that leaking classified information to the media is an act of treason, but those under 40 “are less convinced than their elders that media outlets are hurting national security when they publish these secrets.”
Eighty-five percent of voters who Strongly Approve of the job President Trump is doing consider the leaks to be acts of treason, while 65% of these voters think the media is hurting national security by publicly releasing leaked information. However, of those voters who disapprove of the president’s job performance, only 28% think the leaks are actually treasonous, and 30% say media outlets are hurting national security.
“Forty-nine percent (49%) of all voters think most media outlets publish classified information because they believe it’s the public’s right to know these things, but nearly as many (44%) say they are doing it for political reasons instead,” according to the poll.
When voters were asked whether “President Obama or his inner circle were aware that U.S. intelligence agencies were spying on Trump’s campaign, 33% believe senior members of the Obama administration spread secretly obtained information about the incoming president and his team to members of the media.”
Voters were also asked if the U.S. government generally does a good job at protecting national secrets. “Sixty-seven percent (67%) of GOP voters think the media is more interested in creating controversies when it comes to Trump and the new Congress, while just as many Democrats (65%) believe the media is more interested in helping the public understand the issues,” according to the data.
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