Middle East Turmoil Closely Followed; Romney’s Comments Viewed Negatively
About four-in-ten Americans (43%) have followed news about the attacks on U.S. embassies in the Middle East and the killing of an American ambassador very closely. Those following have much more positive opinions about Barack Obama’s handling of the situation than Mitt Romney’s comments on the crisis.
Romney’s Overseas Trip a Chance to Burnish Foreign Policy Credentials
Mitt Romney’s trip to Europe and Israel this week highlights a potential weakness of his candidacy.
Global Opinion of Obama Slips
Global approval of President Barack Obama’s policies has declined significantly since he first took office, while the overall ratings of the United States are mostly positive. There has been widespread opposition to the U.S. use of drone strikes and the global public now views China as the world’s economic leader.
Partisan Polarization Surges in Bush, Obama Years
Americans values and basic beliefs are more polarized along partisan lines than at any point in the past 25 years. Party has now become the single largest fissure in American society, with the values gap between Republicans and Democrats greater than gender, age, race or class divides.
Most Swing Voters Favor Afghan Troop Withdrawal
Public support for maintaining U.S. forces in Afghanistan has reached a new low. And as the general election campaign begins, swing voters, by nearly two-to-one, favor removing U.S. troops from Afghanistan as soon as possible.
Little Support for U.S. Intervention in Syrian Conflict
Most Americans say the U.S. does not have a responsibility to intervene in the conflict in Syria and oppose using military options to protect anti-government forces. However, a majority are concerned about the possibility of Iran developing nuclear weapons and worry that the U.S. will wait too long to act.
Does Humanitarian Aid Improve America’s Image?
Humanitarian aid to countries struck by major natural disasters — such as the earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan nearly a year ago — has produced more favorable opinions of the U.S. among the populations of those countries. But the long term impact of such aid on public opinion has proved to have its limits.
Public Takes Tough Line on Iran’s Nuclear Program
Nearly six-in-ten Americans say it is important to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, even if it means taking military action. Just 30% say it is more important to avoid a military conflict with Iran.
Public Priorities: Deficit Rising, Terrorism Slipping
As the State of the Union approaches, the economy continues to be the public’s top priority. Fully 86% say that strengthening the economy should be a top priority for the president and Congress this year, and 82% rate improving the job situation as a top priority.
The American-Western European Values Gap
Americans’ values differ significantly from those of their Western Europeans counterparts. Although this gap is long-standing, current polling shows Americans coming closer to Europeans in not seeing their culture as superior to others.