The death of al-Qaida leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in Iraq came as more Americans than ever thought the war in Iraq was a mistake, according to AP-Ipsos polling.
The poll, taken Monday through Wednesday before news broke that U.S. forces had killed al-Zarqawi, found that 59 percent of adults say the United States made a mistake in going to war in Iraq _ the highest level yet in AP-Ipsos polling.
Approval of President Bush’s handling of Iraq dipped to 33 percent, a new low. His overall job approval was 35 percent, statistically within range of his low of 33 percent last month. The poll of 1,003 adults has a sampling error margin of plus or minus 3 percentage points.
Among other findings:
_More than half, 54 percent, said it’s unlikely that a stable, democratic government will be established in Iraq, a new high in AP-Ipsos polling. The survey was completed before Iraq’s parliament approved three key new government ministers. Just 67 percent of Republicans, 63 percent of conservatives, and 57 percent of white evangelicals believed a stable, democratic government is likely.
_Only 68 percent of Republicans, 57 percent of white evangelicals and 51 percent of self-described conservatives _ key groups in Bush’s base of support _ approved of his handling of Iraq. Those most likely to disapprove are Democrats (89 percent), women (70 percent), minorities (84 percent), city dwellers (72 percent), those with household incomes under $25,000 (71 percent), and unmarried men (70 percent).
_Those most likely to believe the war in Iraq was a mistake are Democrats (84 percent), women (63 percent), especially suburban women (67 percent), minorities (76 percent), city dwellers (66 percent), self-described liberals (82 percent), moderates (64 percent), and Catholics (62 percent).
AP Polling Director Mike Mokrzycki, AP Manager of News Surveys Trevor Tompson and AP News Survey specialist Dennis Junius contributed to this story.