February 24, 2017
2/24: The World Stage: A Majority Says Trump’s Decisions Weaken U.S. Position… Nearly Half View Russian Connection as Harmful
A majority of Americans are not overly impressed with President Donald Trump’s performance on the world stage. 52% of adults nationally think Trump has weakened the position of the United States around the globe. 38% say he has strengthened it, and 10% are unsure. Trump’s meetings with foreign leaders also do not make the grade with U.S. residents. 48% assert the president’s meetings and talks with foreign leaders have weakened the global standing of the United States. 42% believe those discussions have strengthened the nation’s position.
On both of these questions, there is a political divide with more than eight in ten Republicans viewing Trump positively and at least eight in ten Democrats perceiving him negatively. Trump’s positives on these questions are driven mostly by those who supported Trump during the presidential campaign, Republicans, conservatives, white evangelical Christians, and Tea Party supporters.
Much scrutiny has been given to the Trump Administration’s perceived ties to Russia, and nearly half of Americans do not consider the connection to be beneficial to the United States. 47% of residents nationally say President Trump’s relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin is mostly a bad thing for the United States. 39% think it is a good thing, and a notable 14% are unsure.
Here too, there is a partisan split. 80% of Democrats consider the leaders’ relationship to be detrimental to the United States while 73% of Republicans think it is a benefit. Independents divide. 43% report the relationship is a good thing for the United States, and the same proportion, 43%, say it is a bad thing. 13% are unsure.
“As President Trump breaks new ground in U.S. and Russian relations, nearly three in four Republicans support him,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. “What’s interesting here is that the president and the GOP congressional leadership may find themselves at odds as details of the policies are spelled out.”
Nearly half of Americans think there is something suspicious about Trump and Putin’s interactions. 19% of U.S. residents believe that Trump has done something illegal in his dealings with Putin. An additional 30% think the president has done something unethical but not illegal. Only 40% of Americans think President Trump has done nothing wrong. 12% are unsure.