Chicago Council Survey Tracks Public Opinion on Foreign Policy Ahead of Final Presidential Debate


October 19, 2012 - Foreign policy will take center stage in the third and final presidential debate Monday night at Florida’s Lynn University. While the candidates will undoubtedly highlight differences between them, the 2012 Chicago Council Survey finds that partisan differences among the public are usually ones of degree, not outright disagreement.

The Chicago Council on Global Affairs has prepared a background brief on key foreign policy topics that, according to moderator Bob Schieffer, will be covered during Monday’s debate.  Pulled from its recent public opinion survey findings, the brief provides insights into current public thinking on the following issues:

  • America’s Role in the World
  • Afghanistan and Pakistan
  • Red Lines: Israel and Iran
  • The Changing Middle East and the New Face of Terrorism
  • The Rise of China and Tomorrow’s World

Download the brief on American public opinion on U.S. foreign policy (PDF).

The 2012 Chicago Council Survey was made possible by the generous support of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, the Korea Foundation, and the United States-Japan Foundation.

Learn more and download the full 2012 Chicago Council Survey report, "Foreign Policy in the New Millennium." To receive e-mail notifications about future reports from the 2012 Chicago Council Survey, subscribe now. Follow @ChicagoCouncil for updates. 

For more information or comment, please contact Dina Smeltz, senior fellow, Public Opinion and Global Affairs (202-294-9199).


The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, founded in 1922, is a prominent, independent and nonpartisan organization committed to influencing the discourse on global issues through contributions to opinion and policy formation, leadership dialogue, and public learning.

2012 Chicago Council Survey Report Cover

Survey Home

Full Report (PDF)

Press Release

Release Event 

Release Event Presentation - Bouton (PDF)


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American Shifting Focus to Asia

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American Public Opinion on U.S. Foreign Policy
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