June 1, 2009

Strongly Support U.S. Involvement in World Affairs

51%

Half of Americans now say they completely agree that it is best for the U.S. to play an active role in international affairs, up sharply from 2007.

There is no sign that the public is turning inward in response to difficult economic times; in the latest Pew Research Center values survey, 51% of Americans now say they completely agree that it is best for the future of the country for the U.S. to play an active role in world affairs, up from 42% two years ago. Democrats are especially supportive with 55% now completely agreeing that international involvement serves the country’s future interests, compared with 47% of Republicans who take that view. Still, as other Pew Research surveys this year have found, the public clearly believes that domestic concerns should take precedence over foreign matters. More than three-quarters of Americans (78%) agree that “we should pay less attention to problems overseas and concentrate on problems here at home.” Yet that percentage is no higher than it has been the past two values surveys, in 2007 and 2003. Read More