A newly released Gallup Poll¬†shows that a majority of Americans believe that presidents should talk to the leaders of “enemy” countries in an effort to solve problems. The poll shows citizens of all parties favor this sort of diplomacy over the staunch view held by John McCain who says that sitting down for meetings with enemy foreign leaders is “reckless.”

Even Republicans, who for at least the last 8 years have operated under a “shoot first, negotiate never” policy, are starting to come around to the old adage we’re taught on the schoolyard- try to solve your problems first with words and not fists.

And it’s not as if a president who talks with America’s stated foes is a new concept here. Kennedy and Khrushchev. Nixon and Mao. Reagan and Gorbachev. Hell, two of those guys were Republicans! Yet once the GOP got a frat boy into the Oval Office, we don’t talk to enemies? Better to bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran than to have a sit down? Again, most Americans don’t think so…

If anything, this poll indicates that Americans are tiring of the “cowboy diplomacy” employed by the Bush Administration and being co-opted by the McCain campaign as the best way to move America forward in the world. Even Hillary Clinton has towed the Bush-McCain doctrine in this arena. Americans are ready to move on to a more cooperative, more adult-oriented, more reality based foreign policy, and clearly McCain isn’t on the same page.

But Barack Obama has already said that talking to our enemies is the best first step towards solving our problems. And Americans agree with him.

(cross posted at Bring It On!)