September 11, 2017

Americans Not Sure Trump's Policies Will Make America Safer

In his inaugural speech, President Trump promised to "unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism, which we will eradicate completely from the face of the Earth." But his administration has yet to release a comprehensive counter-terrorism strategy. The president has tinkered around the edges, with unsuccessful attempts to implement a travel ban from six countries in the Middle East and has continued the Obama administration's blend of airstrikes, Special Forces raids, and military training of the Iraqi army.

The 2017 Chicago Council Survey finds that a majority of Americans continue to believe that international terrorism is one of the most critical threats to the United States (75%), and majorities of Americans (68%) continue to support the use of US airstrikes to combat violent Islamic extremist groups in Syria. The public is more divided, however, over the Trump administration’s ability to make America safe from terrorism. While one-third of Americans (32%) believe President Trump’s policies will make the US safer from the threat of terrorism, another third (35%) think it will make America less safe. 

Read the full survey brief here.

About

The Chicago Council on Global Affairs highlights critical shifts in American public thinking on US foreign policy through public opinion surveys and research conducted under the Lester Crown Center on US Foreign Policy. 

The annual Chicago Council Survey, first conducted in 1974, is a valuable resource for policymakers, academics, media, and the general public. The Council also surveys American leaders in government, business, academia, think tanks, and religious organizations biennially to compare trends in their thinking with overall trends. And collaborating with partner organizations, the survey team periodically conducts parallel surveys of public opinion in other regions of the world to compare with US public opinion. 

The Running Numbers blog features regular commentary and analysis from the Council’s public opinion and US foreign policy research team, including a series of flash polls of a select group of foreign policy experts to assess their opinions on critical foreign policy topics driving the news.

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