Politics & Government

Americans strongly support Obama Cuba initiatives, polls agree

The detail of the front end of a recently painted 1952 Chevrolet sits parked in Havana, Cuba, Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014. U.S. car sales have been banned in Cuba since 1959, forcing Cubans to patch together Fords, Chevrolets and Chryslers that date back to before Fidel Castro's revolution.
The detail of the front end of a recently painted 1952 Chevrolet sits parked in Havana, Cuba, Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014. U.S. car sales have been banned in Cuba since 1959, forcing Cubans to patch together Fords, Chevrolets and Chryslers that date back to before Fidel Castro's revolution. AP

The American public is solidly behind President Barack Obama’s efforts to normalize relations with Cuba, new polls show.

A CNN/ORC survey found 63 percent favor diplomatic relations with Cuba. Two-thirds want an easing of travel restrictions, while 53 percent regard Cuba as no threat to this country.

Obama last week took steps to restore relations. Congress would have to lift the economic embargo, though 55 percent said it should do so. The effort faces strong opposition, notably from Republican leaders.

The CNN survey echoed other polls released this week. a CBS News survey found Americans, by a 2 to 1 margin, favored restoring diplomatic relations. That level of support was roughly the same that CBS found when it first started asking the question in 1977.

An ABC News-Washington Post survey released Tuesday also found strong backing for the Cuba intiativies.

“There are partisan and ideological gaps, but also some surprises,” said an ABC analysis. “Even among Republicans and conservatives, majorities support ending the embargo and travel restrictions. They split evenly in the case of establishing diplomatic relations, with ‘strong’ conservatives opposed. Support is much higher among Democrats, independents, liberals and moderates alike.”

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