July 01, 2003
Duncan J. McCully (315) 624-0200 ext. 240,
Diane Witiak (202) 639-6419
Peter Winch (202) 639-6410

Longer Lines at Airport Security Worth the Wait; Good Marks for Baggage Screeners, New Zogby America Poll Reveals

(Utica, NY) – An overwhelming majority of likely voters agree that increased airport security, which causes longer lines at checkpoints, is worth the additional waiting time. More than nine-in-ten (93%) of 1,012 likely voters agreed, with only 5% disagreeing. (Poll Results)

People living in the Western U.S. were slightly less likely to agree, with 88% saying longer lines are worth the wait, and 8% saying they aren’t. Approval of longer waiting time is nearly unanimous (97%) among likely voters under age 35, while 90% of those over age 70 agree. The Zogby America poll, conducted June 6 – 10, 2003, has a margin of error of +/- 3.2%. Error margins are higher for sub-groups.

Following September 11, 2001, the newly-formed Transportation Security Administration took over baggage screening with federal employees, who are required to be American citizens and meet increased qualification standards than before. A majority of likely voters (55%) approve of the screeners’ performance, while only one-in-three (30%) call it fair or poor.

Women and young people are more likely to give a good or excellent rating of 58% each, compared to men and seniors (51% average).

Voters oppose attempts to replace federal screeners with private security companies. Over half of the respondents (55%) say they would feel less safe with private baggage screeners. About one-in-six (16%) say they would feel more safe under those circumstances, while one-fourth (25%) say such a change would not make any difference to them.

Zogby America Poll Results

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