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US image plummets under Donald Trump: Pew Survey

LiveMint logoLiveMint 27-06-2017 Gregory Viscusi

Paris: Donald Trump has been US president for less than six months but it’s been enough time to send opinions of American leadership plunging.

According to a Pew Research Center public survey of 37 countries, a median of just 22% of respondents have confidence in Trump to do the right thing in international matters, compared with 64% at the end of Barack Obama’s presidency. As a country, the US’s favourable rating fell in the same period to 49% from 64%.

Israel and Russia were the only countries surveyed where the public prefers Trump to Obama.

According to Pew, the steepest slides in the view of Trump came in European allies such as Sweden, Netherlands and Germany, and in South Korea. The decline was less pronounced in some majority-Muslim countries such as Turkey, Tunisia and Jordan, partly because approval for Obama was already low. For instance, only 14% of Jordanians had trust in Obama at the end of his tenure, compared with 9% for Trump. By comparison, 93% of Swedes had confidence in Obama and only 10% feel the same way about Trump.

Lowest rated

Trump was the lowest rated of the world’s major leaders. The survey said a median of 42% had confidence in Germany’s Angela Merkel, 28% in China’s Xi Jinping, and 27% in Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

Pew said the overall view of the US, which Pew has followed since 2002, tends to track approval for the president, even if US culture and Americans as people tend to win higher ratings than their leaders.

“The drop in favourability ratings for the United States is widespread,” Pew said. “The share of the public with a positive view of the US has plummeted in a diverse set of countries from Latin America, North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. Favourability ratings have only increased in Russia and Vietnam.”

The survey was conducted among 40,447 respondents in 37 countries from 16 February to 8 May. Asked about Trump’s character, 75% said he’s “arrogant,” 65% said “ignorant,” and 62% said “dangerous.” Bloomberg

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