As the South Carolina results roll in, many of the commentators on CNN seem flummoxed by the fact that Donald Trump criticized the war in Iraq and still won in South Carolina, “a state with a high number of conservatives and veterans.”
But do conservatives and veterans think the war in Iraq was a mistake or not? CNN seems to think they do.
The reality is that public views of the war are very mixed–Democrats overwhelmingly think the war was a mistake, Independents (who are able to vote in the SC primary), and Republicans continue to support the war.
What about veterans? The assumption on CNN seems to be that veterans would support the war, but in fact they do not. Veterans, whether measured as “I served in the military” or “I am a member of a military family” are almost evenly divided on the wisdom of invading Iraq.
There are many reasons that Trump won SC, but his criticism of the Iraq War should not surprise anyone. Among Independents, Democrats, and even members of the military, the war remains very unpopular.