Throughout his presidency, Donald Trump was broadly unpopular internationally, and his poor ratings have had a negative impact on America’s overall image, especially among key allies and partners. Early reviews for President-elect Joe Biden are much more positive, according to a survey in France, Germany and the U.K. conducted last fall.
Large majorities say they have confidence in Biden to do the right thing in world affairs, a dramatic change from the low ratings Trump received in the summer. Biden’s ratings are only slightly lower than Barack Obama’s near the end of his second term.
In the three European countries surveyed, people are hopeful that America’s handling of various international issues will improve when Biden takes office, including on foreign policy, climate change, and dealing with the coronavirus outbreak.
In this moment of transition, overall ratings for the U.S. are mixed. About half in the UK and France, and 40% in Germany, have a favorable opinion of the United States. But even before the violent storming of the Capitol in early January by a mob of Trump’s supporters, there were widespread concerns about the health of U.S. democracy; with majorities saying the U.S. political system either needs major changes, or be completely reformed.