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Worldwide Poll Shows Putin and Xi More Trusted than Trump

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Worldwide Poll Shows Putin and Xi More Trusted than Trump

2020-01-09 13:00:59

By Laura Tucker, Staff writer; Image: Donald Trump (Image source: Public domain)

It's not good news for Donald Trump. For someone who relies on ratings, his approval rating across the world is not good. In fact, when asked about confidence in world leaders — including Trump, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and Chinese President Xi Jinping, —Trump receives the highest negative ratings of the entire bunch when asked about confidence to "do the right thing" in world affairs. 

What may be even worse news for the current U.S. president is that his numbers in the Pew Research Center poll are much worse than former President Barack Obama. The only country surveyed where he has a higher approval percentage than his predecessor is in Russia, and that's saying a lot. Even former President George W. Bush faired better in other countries than Trump.

The poll showed that respondents also don't trust Xi and Putin, but their numbers are better than Trump's. Of those surveyed. 64 percent of those surveyed in 33 countries said they have no confidence in the U.S. president. Only 29 percent said they do, while 7 percent replied that they don't know.  

Forty-three percent reported no confidence in Xi, with 28 percent having confidence, and 23 percent reporting they don't know. With more confidence than both Xi and Trump, 57 percent have no confidence in Putin, while 33 percent said they do, and 8 percent responding said they don't know.

When looking at regions, Trump's rating is especially low in Western Europe. Around three-quarters of the people in Germany, Sweden, France, Spain, and the Netherlands don't have confidence in him. A whopping 89 percent of the respondents in Mexico don't have confidence in him, which is to be expected with his immigration policies and desire for a border wall between the United States and Mexico, not to mention his comments about Mexico when he launched his campaign in 2015. 

The reasons for disapproving Trump are not social — they are based on his policies. Much of it has to do with his increase in tariffs on imported goods, with 68 saying they did not support his policies, while 18 percent do. Other policies that aren't popular are his withdrawal from climate change agreements and the border wall.

Interestingly, 41 percent of the respondents in the 33 countries said they did support "U.S. negotiations with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un about the country's weapons program." Only 36 percent disapproved. So far Trump's policies with Kim haven't led to much other than a pen pal relationship, and currently, they seem to be on the outs. 

Only six countries reported they had confidence in the way Trump handles world affairs, with Israel chief among them. Seventy-four percent of those polled in Israel support his decision to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

It's also interesting to note that this survey was conducted from May 18 to October 2, 2019, among 36,923 people, so some key international policies are not included in these numbers. Trump's shadow foreign policy in Ukraine that he was impeached over, was not taken into consideration, and neither was his decision to launch an airstrike in Iran last week that took out the country's top military commander, Qasem Soleimani. 

Additionally, there was no significant favorability change for Trump between 2018 and 2019. There were "significant increases" in favorability in 10 countries with regard to the United States, but again, those key foreign policies were not included.

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