Pew poll: Majority says US campaign against ISIS isn’t going well

A majority of Americans don't believe the U.S. military campaign against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is going well, according to a new survey.

A Pew Research poll released Tuesday finds that nearly 6 in 10 Americans, 59 percent, say the U.S.-led campaign against ISIS is not working. Thirty-four percent said the campaign was going “very” or “fairly well.”

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A majority in both parties expressed doubts about the effectiveness of the campaign, with 64 percent of Republicans giving the mission a negative review and 52 percent of Democrats saying the same.

A majority of Republicans (70 percent), Democrats (54 percent) and independents (65 percent) also say the U.S.-led coalition lacks a clear goal. 

Overall, though, Americans still support the campaign, with 57 percent approving and 33 disapproving.

The poll comes as critics have questioned the Obama administration’s strategy against ISIS, as the group continues to threaten Baghdad and keeps up its siege of Kobani, a Kurdish town in Syria.

A U.S.-led coalition has hammered ISIS with airstrikes, but some military officials say the group cannot be defeated without ground troops, which President Obama has ruled out.

Obama defended his strategy earlier this month, saying that, while there would be “setbacks” it would be a “long-term campaign.”

The campaign, last week dubbed Operation Inherent Resolve, is in its third month.

The poll finds that Americans are split over the right approach against ISIS. Forty-seven percent are concerned the U.S. will get too involved, while 43 percent worry the U.S. is not going far enough to stop the group.

The survey of 2,003 U.S. adults was conducted Oct. 15-20 using cellphones and landlines with a margin of error of 2.5 points.