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ABC News/Washington Post Six Months After September 11th Poll, March 2002

Resource Type
Dataset : survey data
  • ABC News
  • The Washington Post
Other Title
  • Version 1 (Subtitle)
Collective Title
  • ABC News/Washington Post Poll Series
Publication Date
Free Keywords
al Qaeda; bin Laden, Osama; Bush, George W.; counterterrorism; diplomacy; Hussein, Saddam; international alliances; international relations; military intervention; presidency; presidential performance; public confidence; public opinion; September 11 attack; terrorism; terrorist attacks; terrorist prosecution
  • Abstract

    This special topic poll was undertaken to assess public opinion on United States military and political action regarding terrorism and terrorist threats six months after September 11, 2001. Respondents were asked to give their opinions of President George W. Bush and his handling of the presidency and the campaign against terrorism. Views were also elicited on the military action in Afghanistan, the likelihood and necessity of capturing Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, foreign diplomacy, the possibility of broader anti-terrorist military action, and the effects of September 11th. A series of questions asked whether those queried supported military action in Afghanistan, whether they thought the military action was going well, whether the campaign would become more or less difficult, whether United States involvement would at some point become comparable to its involvement in the Vietnam War, and whether the United States was doing enough to avoid United States military casualties. In regards to bin Laden and the Al Qaeda network, respondents were asked how confident they were that bin Laden would be captured or killed, whether the success of the war on terrorism depended on bin Laden's being captured or killed, how effectively the United States had limited bin Laden's ability to maintain the Al Qaeda network, whether large numbers of United States military casualties should be risked to capture or kill bin Laden, and whether the United States should focus specifically on capturing/killing bin Laden, neutralizing the Al Qaeda network, neither of the two, or both actions. Another series of questions focused on United States diplomatic relationships and the possibility of expanding the current military campaign to other countries. Respondents were asked if the United States was effectively winning support from its allies in the war on terrorism, if the United States was effectively winning support from Muslims in general in the war against terrorism, if American troops should be sent to countries such as the Philippines and Yemen, and if American military action should be taken against Iraq in order to depose Saddam Hussein. If respondents supported action against Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein, they were asked whether allied opposition to such action would affect their support. With respect to future terrorist attacks, respondents were queried as to how much confidence they had in the United States government to prevent such attacks, how concerned they were about more terrorist attacks, and whether the United States was doing all it could to prevent terrorism. The final section focused on changes brought about by the events of September 11th and included questions on whether respondents felt those events had changed the United States in a lasting way, and if so whether this change was for the better or worse, whether respondents' personal lives had been changed, and if so whether their day-to-day lives or their feelings about things were more prominently affected. The last question asked about the respondent's pride in being an American. Background information on respondents includes age, gender, political party, education, Hispanic origin, whether they were currently displaying an American flag in their homes or on their cars, and if so, whether they began doing so after September 11, 2002, or had already been displaying the flag beforehand.
  • Methods

    ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection: Created online analysis version with question text..
  • Table of Contents


    • DS1: ABC News/Washington Post Six Months After September 11th Poll, March 2002
Temporal Coverage
  • Time period: 2002-03
  • 2002-03-07 / 2002-03-10
    Collection date: 2002-03-07--2002-03-10
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
Persons aged 18 and over living in households with telephones in the contiguous 48 United States.
Households were selected by random-digit dialing. Within households, the respondent selected was the adult living in the household who last had a birthday and who was at home at the time of interview.
Collection Mode
  • The data are provided as an SPSS portable file.

    Additional information about sampling, interviewing, weighting, and sampling error may be found in the codebook.

    This collection has not been processed by ICPSR staff. ICPSR is distributing the data and documentation for this collection in essentially the same form in which they were received. When appropriate, documentation has been converted to Portable Document Format (PDF), data files have been converted to non- platform-specific formats, and variables have been recoded to ensure respondents' anonymity.

This study is freely available to ICPSR member institutions via web download.
Alternative Identifiers
  • 3431 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • McArdle, S.C., Rosoff, H., John, R.S.. The dynamics of evolving beliefs, concerns emotions, and behavioral avoidance following 9/11: A longitudinal analysis of representative archival samples. Risk Analysis.32, 744-761.2012.
    • ID: 10.1111/j.1539-6924.2012.01814.x (DOI)

Update Metadata: 2015-08-05 | Issue Number: 6 | Registration Date: 2015-06-15

ABC News; The Washington Post (2002): ABC News/Washington Post Six Months After September 11th Poll, March 2002. Version 1. ABC News/Washington Post Poll Series. Version: v1. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.