US Leadership Approval Rate Rises Again

Approval for American leadership rose again in the first six months of President Joe Biden’s administration, according to a Gallup survey of people in nearly 50 countries. The gains came after the average approval of American leadership in the 108 countries in which Gallup surveyed hit a record low of 30 percent in 2020, the final year of President Donald Trump’s administration.

Gallup, a Washington, DC-based analytics firm, said 2021 data was incomplete, but in the 46 countries for which data was available as of early August, approvals for American leadership were up 49 percent. The number of approvals fell in three countries, from 18 percent to 13 percent in Russia, from 20 percent to 16 percent in Serbia and from 54 percent to 50 percent in Benin.

Approval for American leadership rose sharply in 2021 from 2020 in several European countries, up 52 percent in Portugal, 45 percent in the Netherlands and 41 percent in Sweden. American leadership approvals also jumped from 17 percent to 55 percent in Canada, and were up in double digits in Germany, Italy, France and Japan.

Gallup points to a different American approach to engaging with the world under the Trump and Biden administrations. Trump is promoting an “America First” policy, while Biden seeks to work more closely with other countries.

“These words and actions are likely to reassure many longtime allies of America and the international community at large and help explain the spike in approval rates in most of the 46 countries and territories surveyed through the first half of 2021,” Gallup said.

Even with a higher approval rating, America is still second in some areas when compared to some of its peers. When Gallup asked whether people agreed with the leadership of America, Germany, China, and Russia, Germany ranked first among respondents in Europe, Asia, and countries in the Americas. The United States ranks first only in Africa, with 53 percent approval, just above Germany with 49 percent. [ka/ab]

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