October 31, 2018 | By Dina Smeltz

FOMO: Many Americans Want to Join the Revised TPP Agreement

Australia become the sixth country to ratify the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) this week, following ratification from Canada, Singapore, New Zealand, Japan and Mexico. With Australia’s ratification, the agreement will enter into force on December 30, 2018. The revised agreement was formed among 11 Pacific nations when Trump withdrew the United States from the original Trans-Pacific Partnership; original TPP negotiating members Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, Peru, and Vietnam have yet to officially ratify the new CPTPP agreement.

The deal is being touted as the most important trade agreement reached in more than two decades, with the potential to remove tariffs on an estimated 95% of goods traded between member countries, which have a combined GDP of some $10 trillion. The deal also modernizes previous agreements to reflect the growth of digital trade, services and copyright issues.

President Trump pulled the United States out of the original negotiations last year. But a majority of Americans seem to wish he hadn’t done that. The 2018 Chicago Council Survey, conducted nearly a year after the US withdrew from the agreement, found that a majority of Americans (61%) believe the United States should participate in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), a trade agreement formed among 11 Pacific nations when Trump withdrew the United States from the original Trans-Pacific Partnership.

A majority of Democrats (76%) and Independents (60%) favor US participation, while Republicans are quite divided (49% oppose, 45% favor). Within the Republican party support, a majority of Republicans with a “very favorable” view of Donald Trump – Trump Republicans – oppose it (37% support, 57% oppose), while a slight majority of all other Republicans – non-Trump Republicans – favor the CPTPP (54% favor, 39% oppose).

In a separate question, a majority of GOP supporters prefer negotiating with one country at a time, which has been President Trump’s stated preference. By contrast, a majority of Democrats prefer negotiating with a group of countries – like the CPTPP negotiations – while Independents are divided between the two options.

For more on American public opinion and US foreign policy, check out the full 2018 Chicago Council Survey report, America Engaged.

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.

Archive

| By Dina Smeltz, Brendan Helm

Scholars vs the Public: Collapse of the INF Treaty

In early February 2019, the United States withdrew from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty following President Trump’s October 2018 (and the Obama administration’s July 2014) accusations that Russia was failing to comply with the treaty. Russia withdrew from the treaty the next day.

Findings from a February 2019 Chicago Council on Global Affairs general public survey and a December 2018 Teaching, Research, and International Policy (TRIP) survey of International Relations (IR) scholars around the world illustrate how these different populations perceive the collapse of the INF Treaty.



| By Craig Kafura

Expert Panel Survey: US Focus on the Denuclearization of North Korea

Despite expectations for the meeting between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un, their recent summit in Hanoi ended with no agreement toward denuclearization. With that in mind, we asked our panel of foreign policy experts whether the United States should continue to focus primarily on denuclearization, or shift to arms control and non-proliferation.



| By Dina Smeltz

Opinion Landscape Not Ideal for New Mideast Peace Plan

At a Middle East conference this month in Warsaw, Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and Mideast adviser, said that the administration will unveil its much-vaunted Middle East peace plan after the April 9 Israeli elections.


| By Karl Friedhoff

America the Dangerous

The Trump administration has taken a hard line on China, but has failed to convince the American public or many allies to follow suit. Instead, publics around the world now see the United States as a major threat.






| By Craig Kafura

2018: Year in Chicago Council Surveys

It's been a busy, eventful year around the world. Throughout 2018, the Council's polling team has captured public and opinion leader attitudes on some of the most pressing foreign policy issues, including US-Russia relations, American views of China, public support for internationalism and trade, and how the rising generation of Millennials think about American foreign policy.


| By Karl Friedhoff

Confidence in Congress Low

As the House becomes majority Democrat, there is low confidence among the American public for Congress--and several other institutions--to shape policies that benefit the United States.



| By Craig Kafura

Public Support for Foreign Aid Programs

Past surveys have found that Americans want to cut US spending on foreign assistance and dramatically overestimate how much the US spends on those programs. When asked to construct their own US budget in the 2018 Chicago Council Survey, Americans allocate far more than the US actually spends.