Poll: Iowa Dems say US should accept Syrian refugees
© Getty Images
Democrats are overwhelmingly in favor of accepting Syrian refugees into America — precisely the opposite reaction of Republicans, a new poll shows.
President Obama's willingness to resettle Syrian refugees in America is supported by 81 percent of Iowa Democrats who are likely to vote in the Feb. 1 caucuses, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Only 13 percent say they oppose accepting the refugees and 6 percent say they are unsure.
The result is an exact reversal of the response given by Republican voters surveyed by the same pollsters in Iowa. In the Quinnipiac poll published Tuesday of likely GOP caucus-goers, 81 percent said they would oppose accepting Syrian refugees into the U.S.
These views held when both Democrats and Republicans were asked how they would feel about allowing Syrian refugees into Iowa. Eighty percent of Democrats supported resettling Syrian refugees in their home state while 82 percent of Republicans opposed the idea.
Syrian refugees became a focus of intense political contention following the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria's (ISIS) coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris earlier this month. 
While none of the attackers has been proven to be a Syrian refugee, Republican candidates for president — and none more forcefully than billionaire front-runner Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpFive takeaways from the Democratic debate As Buttigieg rises, Biden is still the target Leading Democrats largely pull punches at debate MORE — have demanded that President Obama scrap his plans to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. 
Trump has said that he believes ISIS will use the refugee program as a "Trojan Horse" to sneak terrorists into the U.S. The celebrity businessman and his rivals, such as Texas Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzLawmakers spar over surveillance flight treaty with Russia Senators voice support for Iran protesters but stop short of taking action Prisons chief: FBI investigating whether 'criminal enterprise' played role in Epstein death MORE and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, all say the ISIS attacks reinforce the urgent need for the Obama administration to secure the southern border and stop its refugee intakes.
President Obama has stood by his plan despite growing criticisms from lawmakers, including a number from his own party.
A bill to halt resettling Syrian refugees passed the House with a veto-proof majority last week, and almost every GOP presidential candidate disagrees with resettling refugees in America, at least for the time being.
Another key difference between Democrat and Republican voters in Iowa is that the Democrats say they are less worried about a terrorist attack — similar to the recent Paris atrocity — happening on U.S. soil. Just 17 percent of Iowa Democrats say they are "very worried" about such an attack compared with 53 percent of Republican voters.
There is, however, one thing that Iowa Democrats and Republicans agree upon.
When asked whether the U.S. and its allies are winning or losing the fight against ISIS, more from both parties believe they are losing. However, even on that topic, there are differences. Among Democrats polled, 41 percent believe the U.S. and its allies are losing the fight against ISIS, while 31 percent believe they are winning. Among Republicans, 83 percent said they were losing and only 9 percent said they were winning.
Quinnipiac polled 543 likely Iowa Democratic Caucus participants Nov. 16–22. The poll has a margin of error of 4.2 percentage points.  
Ben Kamisar contributed reporting.