Global approval of US leadership falls to new low

Global approval of US leadership falls to new low

Global approval of U.S. leadership sank to its lowest point in nearly two decades in 2017, with some of the biggest losses coming in countries long-considered Washington's allies and partners, according to a Gallup survey out Thursday.

Median approval of U.S. leadership plummeted from 48 percent to just 30 percent in the first year of President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Pentagon investigator probing whether acting chief boosted former employer Boeing Trump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral MORE's tenure in the White House, shattering the previous record low of 34 percent in the last year of President George W. Bush's second term.

According to Gallup, the low approval rating of U.S. leadership in 2017 had little if anything to do with people in other countries not being familiar with the new administration in Washington.

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The global median of people who reported no opinion in Trump's first year in office is similar to the median during President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaBudowsky: Biden or Beto: Where's the beef? Super Tuesday bonanza raises stakes for Dems Whatever happened to nuclear abolition? MORE's last year in office — 23 percent and 25 percent, respectively. 

The perception of U.S. leadership declined sharply in countries traditionally considered U.S. allies, notably across Western Europe, as well as in Canada, Mexico and Australia, according to the Gallup survey. 

Approval of U.S. leadership grew in some countries, however, including in Russia, Ukraine and Israel, the poll found.

As a presidential candidate, Trump campaigned on a message of "America First," vowing to withdraw the U.S. from multilateral trade pacts and other international agreements that he deemed unfair to the U.S. 

Within days of taking office, for example, Trump withdrew the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership — a trade deal struck with a nearly a dozen other countries across the Pacific. Approval of U.S. leadership in many of the countries involved in that agreement has declined sharply, the Gallup poll found.

The Gallup survey is based on interviews with 1,000 people aged 15 or older in 134 countries. The margin of error ranges from 2.1 percentage points to 5 percentage points.