A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 41% of Likely U.S. Voters rate the way the Obama administration has responded to the situation in Egypt as good or excellent. Twenty-two percent (22%) view the administration’s response so far as poor.
But only 18% of voters say things would be better if the UN stepped in to help resolve the political crisis in Egypt. A plurality (46%) say UN involvement would make the situation worse, while 13% think it would have no impact. One-in-four voters (24%) aren’t sure. Most Americans expect the unrest in Egypt to spread to other Middle Eastern countries and think that will be bad for the United States. But a sizable majority also believe the United States should stay out of Egypt’s current problems.
The U.S. government seemed initially reluctant to get involved after large-scale and growing street protests began in Egypt last week. But over the weekend, an emissary from President Obama reportedly urged long-time Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak not to run for reelection this fall and to allow free and open elections instead. Mubarak has since announced he will not seek reelection.
Sixty percent (60%) of Americans think it is more important for the United States to be allies with any country that best protects our own national security than it is to be allies only with countries that have freely elected governments. Just 20% say it is more important for America to only be allies with countries with democratically elected leaders.
The Egyptian situation puts the White House in an awkward position since the country now is America’s – and Israel’s – strongest Muslim ally in the Middle East.
Seventy-two percent (72%) of voters now say they are following recent news reports about the political unrest in Egypt at least somewhat closely, with 48% who are following Very Closely.
Voters have consistently for months trusted Republicans more than Democrats in the area of national security.