American Public Opinion on the Ukraine War

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By PEW RESEARCH CENTER*

Opinion patterns on how the US government is handling the Russian invasion are similar to those on Biden's overall job performance.

O Pew Research Center conducted this study to better understand American attitudes toward the Russian invasion of Ukraine, as well as the Biden administration's response to the invasion. For this analysis, we interviewed 10.441 US adults in March 2022. All who participated in this survey are members of the American Trends Panel [American Trends Panel] (ATP) conducted by Pew Research Center, an online survey panel that is established by nationwide random sampling of home addresses. In this way, nearly all US adults have a chance of selection. The poll is weighted to be representative of the US adult population by gender, race, ethnicity, party affiliation, education, and other categories.

Three weeks into the Russian military invasion of Ukraine, nearly half of Americans (47%) approve of the Biden administration's handling of the Russian invasion, while about four in 39 (13%) disapprove; XNUMX% said they weren't sure.

About a third of Americans (32%) say the United States is providing adequate support to Ukraine as it struggles to stop the Russian invasion. A higher percentage – 42% – say the US should be supporting Ukraine more, while just 7% say it is supporting it too much. Around one in five (19%) say they are not sure.

The new survey, conducted March 7-13, 2022, among 10.441 U.S. adults from  American Trends Panel (ATP), led by the Pew Research Center, finds wide partisan differences in opinion about the government's handling of the crisis and the level of support the US has provided to Ukraine.

However, virtually identical percentages in both parties – 51% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, and 50% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning – consider the Russian invasion a “major threat” to US interests.

In addition, there are several aspects of US policy toward Russia and Ukraine that attract bipartisan support. although the republicans have previously expressed skepticism about the extent to which the US should work with its allies, nearly three-quarters of them (73%) say working closely with allies to respond to the Russian invasion is the right approach. An even larger share of Democrats (85%) say the same.

Americans are also largely united in their support for strict economic sanctions against Russia in response to the invasion of Ukraine. An overwhelming majority of people (85%) – including similar percentages of Republicans (85%) and Democrats (88%) – are in favor of maintaining strict economic sanctions. About six out of ten Americans (63%) are tightly in favor of strict sanctions.

Large majorities also favored maintaining numerous US military forces in NATO countries close to Ukraine in response to the conflict (77%), a position shared by 75% of Republicans and 81% of Democrats.

However, a majority of Americans (62%) say they would oppose the US "taking military action even if there was a risk of nuclear conflict with Russia". About a third (35%) of Americans say they would favor military action in this scenario. There are comparable percentages in both parties (36% Republicans, 35% Democrats) who say they favor military action, even if there is a risk of nuclear conflict with Russia.

And while nearly seven in 69 Americans (80%) are in favor of admitting thousands of Ukrainian refugees to the US, including a majority of those in both parties, Democrats are substantially more likely than Republicans to say so. (57% vs. XNUMX%).

The new poll also found:

People's great attention to the Russian invasion. About seven in 69 adults (23%) now report having read or heard a lot about the Russian invasion, compared with XNUMX% of those who said they had read or heard a lot about the Russian troop build-up on the Ukrainian border. in a January poll.

Today, nearly equal percentages of Republicans (70%) and Democrats (71%) say they've heard or read a lot about the invasion.

Biden's job approval largely unchanged after January. Today, 43% of Americans approve of the way Joe Biden is handling his job as president, while 55% disapprove. that has changed little since January, when 41% of Americans approved of Biden's performance in office.

Nearly half approve of the Biden administration's response to the Russian invasion; and more people claim that the US is doing far less than necessary for Ukraine

Overall, more Americans approve (47%) than disapprove (39%) of the Biden administration's response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, while 13% of Americans say they are not sure.

For the most part, patterns of opinion about the administration's handling of the Russian invasion are similar to those of opinions about Biden's overall job performance.

Democrats and Democratic-leaning broadly approve of the administration's response to the Russian invasion (69% approve), while Republicans and Republican-leaning overwhelmingly disapprove (67% disapprove).

Among demographic groups, black adults are particularly likely to approve of the government's response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine: 57% approve, 20% disapprove. Hispanic and Asian adults are more likely to approve than disapprove of the Biden administration's response, while white adults are split (45% approve, 44% disapprove).

There are also educational differences in opinions about the Biden administration's response to the Russian invasion. Nearly six in ten (57%) of people with at least four years of higher education approve of the government's response, compared with 42% of people who have not completed a higher education.

There is a correlation between Biden's overall job rating and opinions of his administration's response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Among those who disapprove of Biden's job performance, the majority (63%) disapprove of the administration's response to Ukraine; still, 22% approve and 14% are not sure. Among the 43% of people who approve of Biden's overall job performance, very few (just 9%) disapprove of the government's response to the invasion, while 11% are unsure and 79% approve.

 

US support for Ukraine

Overall, about a third of Americans say the US is providing adequate support to Ukraine, while a larger percentage (42%) say it is not providing enough support; only 7% say it is providing too much support, while 19% are unsure.

While there are deep partisan divisions in opinion about the administration's response to the crisis, opinion on US support for Ukraine is less divided. Nearly half of Republicans (49%) say the US is providing too little support; 23% say they are providing adequate support and 9% think the US is giving Ukraine too much support.

Among Democrats, comparable percentages say the US is providing Ukraine with adequate support (39%) and too little support (38%). Only 5% of Democrats say the US is giving Ukraine too much support – about half the percentage of Republicans who say the same.

There are modest ideological differences within both parties in terms of support for Ukraine: A 54% majority of conservative Republicans say the US is not doing enough for Ukraine, compared with 41% of moderate and liberal Republicans. Among Democrats, liberals (43%) are more likely than moderates and conservatives (34%) to say that the US is not providing enough support.

Among those who disapprove of the Biden administration's response to the invasion, a majority (54%) say the US is not providing enough support for Ukraine, compared with 18% who say it is providing adequate support and just 13% who say it is. giving too much support.

About half of those approving of the government's response (48%) say the US is providing adequate support to Ukraine, while four in 2 favor increased support and almost none (XNUMX%) say the US is providing too much. support.

 

Half of adults say Russian invasion of Ukraine is a “major threat” to US interests

Half of Americans say the Russian invasion of Ukraine is a major threat to US interests, while another 28% say it is a minor threat; only 6% say the invasion is not a threat to US interests, while 16% are unsure. This marks a substantial change from the pre-Russian invasion; in January, only 26% said that “the concentration of Russian troops near the border with Ukraine” posed a major threat to US interests.

Republicans and Democrats express virtually identical views on the threat of Russian invasion; 51% of Republicans and 50% of Democrats say it is a major threat to US interests. In January, about a quarter of each party saw Russian troop concentrations near Ukraine as a major threat.

 

Bipartisan support for maintaining strict sanctions against Russia while maintaining large numbers of US forces in Ukraine's neighboring NATO countries

More than eight in 88 Democrats and Democrats (85%) and Republicans and Republicans (XNUMX%) favor maintaining strict economic sanctions against Russia. And at least six out of ten in each party are tightly favorable to maintaining strict sanctions (68% of Democrats, 61% of Republicans).

Similar percentages of Republicans (75%) and Democrats (81%) are in favor of maintaining a large military presence in NATO countries located near Ukraine. And there is limited support among Republicans and Democrats for military action, even if there is a risk of a nuclear conflict with Russia: about a third of people (35%) and nearly identical percentages of Democrats (35%) and Republicans (36% ) are in favor of this.

However, Democrats are substantially more likely than Republicans to be in favor of admitting thousands of Ukrainian refugees to the United States.

Eight in 57 Democrats say they are in favor of admitting thousands of Ukrainian refugees, compared with a smaller majority of Republicans (XNUMX%).

And Democrats are about twice as likely as Republicans to be tightly in favor of admitting thousands of Ukrainian refugees to the US: 42% of Democrats are strongly in favor of this, compared to 20% of Republicans.

 

Small change in views on Biden's job performance

People's opinion of Joe Biden's job performance has changed little since January. Today, 43% of Americans say they approve of the way Joe Biden is doing his job as president; 41% gave Biden a positive review of his work in January. Biden's job ratings have remained fairly stable over the past six months after dropping sharply this past summer.

While Republicans overwhelmingly disapprove of Biden's job performance (91% disapprove), a slimmer majority of Democrats (72%) approve of the way he is doing his job as president.

*Pew Research Center is an American non-partisan think tank.

This research was coordinated by Carroll Doherty.

Translation: Fernando Lima das Neves.

Originally published in Pew Research Center.

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