Washington DC: In 30 out
of 35 countries polled, from all regions of the world, a
majority or plurality would prefer to see John Kerry win
the US presidential election—especially traditional
US allies. The only countries where President Bush was preferred
were the Philippines, Nigeria, and Poland. India and Thailand
were divided. On average, Kerry was favored by more than
a two-to-one margin—46% to 20% (weighted for variations
in population, the ratio was not significantly different).
Overall, one-third did not give an answer.
The poll of 34,330 people was conducted mainly during July and August 2004, with some countries being polled as early as May. Polling was conducted by GlobeScan
and its worldwide network of research institutes, in conjunction
with the Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA)
of the University of Maryland. Due to the difficulties of
polling in developing countries, in eleven countries, polling
was limited to metropolitan areas. The margin of error ranged
from +/- 2.3-5%.
Steven Kull, director of
PIPA, comments, “Only one in five want to see Bush
reelected. Though he is not as well known, Kerry would win
handily if the people of the world were to elect the US
president.” Support for Kerry was greater among those
with higher education and income levels.
Asked how the foreign policy
of President Bush has affected their feelings toward the
US, in 31 countries a majority or plurality said it made
them feel “worse” about America, while in 3
countries, more of the respondents said that it had made
them feel “better” towards America. On average,
53% of respondents said Bush’s foreign policy made
them feel worse about the US, while 19% said it made them
GlobeScan President Doug
Miller says, “Perhaps most sobering for Americans
is the strength of the view that US foreign policy is on
the wrong track, even in countries contributing troops in
Kerry was strongly
preferred among all of America’s traditional allies. These
included Norway (74% for Kerry to 7% for Bush), Germany (74%
to 10%), France (64% to 5%), the Netherlands (63% to 6%),
Italy (58% to 14%), and Spain (45% to 7%). Even in the UK,
Kerry was preferred by more than 30 percentage points (47%
to 16%). Among Canadians, Kerry was preferred by 61% to 16%
and among the Japanese by 43% to 23%.
The exception for Bush in Europe was a
new ally, Poland, where he was preferred by a narrow
plurality of 31% against 26% for Kerry. Another new ally,
however, the Czech Republic, went for Kerry (42% to 18%), as
did Sweden (58% to 10%),
Asia was the most mixed region, though
Kerry still did better. He was preferred by clear majorities
in China (52% to 12%) and Indonesia (57% to 34%), as well as
by a large margin in Japan (43% to 23%). But publics were
divided in India (Kerry 34%, Bush 33%) and Thailand (Kerry
30%, Bush 33%).
Asia was also the sole region in which
Bush garnered more than 50 percent support from a country,
with 57% of Filipinos favoring him (Kerry 32%). Bush’s
post-9/11 aid to the Filipino government’s efforts against
the terrorist group Abu Sayyaf may have engendered
Latin Americans went for Kerry in all nine countries polled.
In only two cases did Kerry win a majority—Brazil (57% to
14%) and the Dominican Republic (51% to 38%)—but in most
cases the spread was quite wide. These included Venezuela
(48% to 22%), Colombia (47% to 26%), Argentina (43% to 6%),
Mexico (38% to 18%), Uruguay (37% to 5%), Peru (37% to 26%),
and Bolivia (25% to 16%).
Bush was preferred in Nigeria with 33%,
as compared to 27% for Kerry. However, Kerry was preferred
in the five other African states polled, including Kenya
(58% to 25%), Ghana (48% to 24%), Tanzania (44% to 30%),
South Africa (43% to 29%), and Zimbabwe (28% to 6%).
In Eurasian states, Kerry led, though a
significant number did not express a preference. In Russia,
Kerry was preferred 20% to 10%, Turkey 40% to 25%, and in
Kazakhstan 40% to 12%.
Interestingly, among countries that have contributed troops
to the operation in Iraq, most favored Kerry and said that
their view of the US has gotten worse with Bush’s foreign
policy. These include the UK, the Czech Republic, Italy, the
Netherlands, the Dominican Republic, Kazakhstan, Japan,
Norway, and Spain. Thailand was divided on Kerry and Bush
(33% Bush—30% Kerry). But slightly more Thais said their
view of the US has gotten better (35% to 30% worse).
However, this group also included the two
countries most favorable to Bush—the Philippines and Poland.
Among Filipinos, 57% said they prefer Bush over Kerry, and
58% say that their view of US foreign policy has gotten
better. But among Poles, though a modest plurality favored
Bush (31% to 26%), a plurality of 41% said that their view
of US foreign policy has gotten worse, while only 15% said
it has gotten better.
Strongest negative views of US foreign
policy were held in Germany (83% say “worse”), France (81%),
Mexico (78%), China (72%), Canada (71%), Netherlands (71%),
Spain (67%), Brazil (66%), Italy (66%), Argentina (65%), and
the UK (64%). The only countries in which more said that the
Bush foreign policy made them feel better toward the US
were: the Philippines, (58% better-27% worse), India (38%
better—33% worse) and Thailand (35% better and 30% worse).
Nigeria was divided (36% better—34% worse) as was Venezuela
(33% better-34% worse).
GlobeScan Incorporated is a global public
opinion and stakeholder research firm with offices in
Toronto, London and Washington. GlobeScan conducts custom
research and annual tracking studies on global issues. With
a research network spanning 40+ countries, GlobeScan works
with global companies, multilateral agencies, national
governments and non-government organizations to deliver
research-based insights for successful strategies.
The Program on International Policy
Attitudes (PIPA) is a joint program of the Center on Policy
Attitudes and the Center for International and Security
Studies at the University of Maryland. PIPA undertakes
research on attitudes in both the public and in the
policymaking community toward a variety of international and
foreign policy issues. It seeks to disseminate its findings
to members of government, the press, and the public as well
For more information on the PIPA/GlobeScan
poll see: www.pipa.org
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