Public strongly favors CWC
Senator Lugar releases poll --
vast majority of Americans
from both parties want treaty

Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN) released a poll Feb. 28 showing an overwhelming majority of Americans support ratification of the Chemical Weapons Convention. When asked if the United States Senate should ratify a treaty which would “ban the production, possession, transfer, and use of poison gas worldwide,” 84 percent of the respondents said the treaty should be ratified.

The national survey, conducted by Wirthlin Worldwide and the Mellman Group, Inc., showed the high level of support was consistent among both Democrats and Republicans questioned. In fact, support for this treaty cuts across every demographic group, and its margin of support has grown nearly 10 points since May. Excerpts from the survey include:

“Three quarters (75%) of Americans say they would vote for a Senate candidate if that candidate feels the United States should ratify the chemical weapons treaty, while only a quarter (22%) would vote for a candidate who feels the treaty should be rejected. While Democrats and independents are the most likely to vote for a candidate who supports ratification, even conservative Republicans would support a politician who wants to approve the treaty by more than a 2 to 1 margin.
“Americans reject the argument that this treaty would impose expensive regulations on law-abiding countries, while rogue nations would continue to stockpile chemical weapons. In fact, an overwhelming majority take the position that the treaty to ban the production and possession of chemical weapons would reduce the risk that American troops or civilians will be subject to a chemical attack by future enemies or terrorist groups.”

Senator Lugar said, “Support for the Chemical Weapons Convention is robust. Not only do Americans feel that they and our troops will be better prepared, or better protected by such a treaty, but they are willing to cast their votes for politicians who help make the treaty international law.... These results should be helpful to members of the Senate as we approach the debate and a vote on the treaty.”

The Associated Press, The Christian Science Monitor, and The Dallas Morning News are among the news organizations across the country who have run the poll results.

The analysis reports the findings from a national survey of 1,000 adults nationwide. The statistical margin of error for the sample as a whole is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. The survey was commissioned by the Henry L. Stimson Center.

Produced by the White House Working Group on the Chemical Weapons Convention.
For more information on the Chemical Weapons Convention: Phone: 202-647-8677 Fax: 202-647-6928