New poll shows significant majority of veterans support more restrained foreign policy, veterans’ health care choice, and reining in national debt
ARLINGTON, Va.—Veterans and military families remain staunchly supportive of ending America’s wars in the Middle East and increasing health care options for our nation’s veterans according to the latest polling from Concerned Veterans for America (CVA). Notably, when compared to a similar poll conducted in 2019, there were marked increases in support for a more restrained foreign policy and positive perception of VA health care.
The poll, conducted by Dynata between April 7-10, 2020, surveyed roughly 1,500 veterans and military households nationwide on issues ranging from foreign policy to veterans’ health care to federal spending.
“It’s no surprise to see growing majorities of veterans and military families supportive of less military engagement around the world,” said CVA Executive Director Nate Anderson. “These groups have borne the burden of America’s foreign policy in recent decades, and it is becoming clearer that our interests are not served by endless wars and aimless nation building exercises in the Middle East. Our foreign policy is undeniably a top-tier issue for veterans and military families. These results should give President Trump and his administration more confidence to follow through on promises to bring American troops home from places like Afghanistan and pursue a more restrained foreign policy that will serve American interests.”
The poll also showed a positive increase in opinion on how VA is delivering care to veterans, a trend coinciding with the expansion of health care options afforded to veterans as the VA MISSION Act began implementation in June of last year.
“With the MISSION Act, we expected an uptick in the opinion of VA care, as well as continued support for increasing health care options,” Anderson continued. “Because of the recent progress made, we’re deeply concerned to watch the VA’s contradicting communication about pausing the outside referrals that are at the heart of the law. This is a time when the VA should do everything possible to expand health care choices for veterans, not arbitrarily restrict them. We urge the VA to quickly remedy the situation and leave health care decisions to veterans. They have earned that right.”
Key findings of the poll, including comparative analysis from CVA’s 2019 poll:
- Ending “endless wars”: From 2019 to 2020, support among veterans for withdrawing from Afghanistan rose 13 percentage points – from 60 percent to 73 percent. Among military family members, it rose 9 percent – from 60 percent to 69 percent.
- Foreign policy: From 2019 to 2020, those veterans believing the United States should be less militarily engaged around the world rose 9 percentage points – from 48 percent to 57 percent.
- Veterans’ health care choice: Over the past year and since the implementation of the VA MISSION Act, the percentage of veterans who think the VA is improving has increased. Relatedly, support for more choice in health care options for veterans remains incredibly high – about 90 percent.
- Federal spending: The vast majority of veterans still view the national debt as a major threat to our national security.
Interviews were conducted online April 7-10, 2020 among 707 Veterans and 803 Military Households using the Dynata Online Research Panel. The estimated margin of error for both samples is +/- 3.5 percentage points. Sampling frames and quotas were utilized to ensure appropriate sampling of the country’s Veteran and Military Family populations. Research was conducted by Concerned Veterans for America.
Two additional questions, coming at the end of the survey, are omitted from reporting. The questions omitted pertain to name recognition and favorability toward organizations that serve the needs of veterans.
Concerned Veterans for America just completed a nationwide, $1.5 million digital and television ad campaign urging a complete withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan.
Polling conducted in January by the Charles Koch Institute and YouGov shows strong support among the general public for withdrawing our troops from Iraq and Afghanistan. Additional polling conducted by Bring Our Troops Home and the Tarrance Group show that the majority of Republican voters in the states of Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania support bringing our troops home from Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan.