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USA: AP-NORC Poll: Majority of Americans favor Russia probe

A slim majority of Americans favor an independent investigation into the Trump campaign's ties with the Russian government, according to a new poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research that showed public views about the controversy driving congressional investigations are sharply divided along party lines.

Amid questions swirling in Washington that have forced the resignation of one top Trump official and the scrutiny of several others, most Americans say they're at least somewhat concerned about the possibility that the Republican businessman's campaign had inappropriate contacts with the Russian government, but less than half say they're very concerned.

More than three-quarters of Democrats favor an independent investigation into Trump's Russian ties while only one-quarter of Republicans do. Overall, 52 percent of Americans favor such a probe, while 23 percent are opposed. Another 22 percent say they neither favor nor oppose an investigation. Asked if they favor an independent investigation into the issue of Moscow's meddling in the 2016 campaign, Americans broke along similar margins.

"Russia has always been an enemy of the United States and of democracy across the world. Our politicians have no business making secret deals with them. That's not the America I know," said John Dodd, 68, who runs a bowling alley in Big Spring, Texas. "Every day, I turn on the news and it feels like there's more to it. For our country's sake, I hope it leads to nowhere. But I am afraid it does."

Questions about possible ties between Trump's associates and Russian officials have dogged the White House.

Since July, the FBI has been conducting a counterintelligence investigation into Russia's interference in the election and possible coordination with Trump associates. House and Senate intelligence committees, led by Republican lawmakers, are also investigating. Some Democratic leaders have called for an independent investigation, saying the congressional probes, particularly the House investigation, has been tainted by political interference from the White House.

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