More than four in 10 Americans (43%) say that the use of torture can be justified to gain key information sometimes (31%) or often (12%), according to a 2007 Pew Research survey. However, a 54% majority say torture is never (29%) or rarely (25%) justified. The number of Americans saying the use of torture against suspected terrorists is at least sometimes justified has been fairly stable since 2004, though the percentage saying torture can often be justified has dipped from 18% in October 2006.


The Daily Number is a statistic, updated every weekday and typically drawn from Pew Research Center project findings, that highlights an important trend.

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