American Views toward Mexico

In advance of President Obama’s visit to Mexico in May 2013, The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, in conjunction with The Woodrow Wilson Center, released a public opinion survey brief on Americans’ views toward Mexico. Findings show Americans’ overall views of Mexico are at their lowest point ever in Chicago Council Surveys dating back to 1994. It also finds relatively few Americans are aware that Mexico is one of our top trading partners.

At the same time, however, a majority of Americans still say that ties with Mexico are important and consider Mexico an economic partner (versus rival). Taken together, the results suggest that increased public awareness of bilateral endeavors could boost support for increased economic and energy integration in the future. 

The brief on Americans’ views toward Mexico is based on the results of a survey of public opinion conducted from April 12 to 15. GfK Custom Research conducted the survey for The Chicago Council using a randomly selected sample of 1,017 adults age 18 and older from their large-scale, nationwide online research panel, recruited using address-based sampling. The margin of error for this survey is ±3.1 percentage points. Download the brief (PDF)

Key findings outlined in the brief include:
  • Attitudes toward bilateral relations are positive, but more now see worsening ties
  • Favorable ratings of Mexico at a new low
  • Only two in ten recognize Mexico as a top trading partner
  • Mexico still seen as the greater beneficiary of NAFTA
  • Americans generally unaware of growing bilateral investment
  • On energy and border issues, Americans tend to think Mexico and the United States are taking different directions
  • Partisan differences mainly on perceived cooperation across issues

This survey was made possible by generous support from Douglas A. Doetsch, Evans Food Group, Ltd., Rob and Kitty Lansing, Clare Muñana, and The Quaker Oats Company, a division of PepsiCo.

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