CBS Poll: 36% Say Gonzales Should Quit

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales speaks during a news conference at the Justice Department in Washington, Tuesday, March 13, 2007. AP

According to a CBS News Poll conducted last week, nearly two-thirds of those who are following developments in the Justice Department firings of eight U.S. Attorneys do not think Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is telling the truth about the dismissals.

Of those who are paying attention, large majorities of Democrats and Independents (80 percent and 71 percent, respectively) do not think Gonzales is being honest, compared to 55 percent of Republicans who think he is.

Of all Americans, 36 percent think Gonzales should resign or be removed from his post as a result of the firings; 28 percent think he should not, while just over a third is unsure. But among all who are closely following the story, more than half — 52 percent — think Gonzales should resign.

However, fewer Americans are following the news about the firings than they were a few weeks ago — Democrats are a bit more likely to be following the story than are Republicans. This may change once Gonzales testifies before Congress. His appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee, originally scheduled for earlier this week, was postponed until today in the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings.

Is Gonzales Telling The Truth About The Firing Of U.S. Attorneys?
(Among respondents who are following news of the firings)
All
Yes
26 percent
No
63 percent

Among Republicans
Yes
55 percent
No
31 percent

Among Democrats
Yes
13 percent
No
80 percent

Among Independents
Yes
18 percent
No
71 percent


CBS News polls: Alberto Gonzales

Should Attorney General Gonzales Resign?
(Among respondents who are following news of the firings)
All
Yes
52 percent
No
38 percent
Unsure
10 percent

Among Republicans
Yes
21 percent
No
41 percent
Unsure
38 percent

Among Democrats
Yes
49 percent
No
19 percent
Unsure
32 percent

Among Independents
Yes
35 percent
No
26 percent
Unsure
39 percent


Forty-one percent of those polled are following news about the firing of U.S. Attorneys, a drop from last month when 50 percent of Americans surveyed were closely following the story.

For detailed information on how CBS News conducts public opinion surveys, click here.

This poll was conducted among a random sample of 994 adults nationwide, interviewed by telephone April 9-12, 2007. The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample could be plus or minus three percentage points. The error for subgroups is higher.
  • Joel Roberts

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