For all of Donald Trump's bravado, Americans have dramatically lower confidence in him to command the respect of foreign leaders than in either of the last two presidents.
Donald Trump has long claimed that the United States has lost the respect of the world and that he is the savior who can restore it.
When Obama was reelected, Trump tweeted that “the world is laughing at us,” a claim he has repeated on the campaign trail. “Russia, China, Japan, Mexico, all countries will respect us far more, far more than they do under past administrations,” Trump said at a press conference a little over a week before his inauguration.
But a new poll from Gallup shows most Americans believe Trump is completely failing to win the respect of foreign leaders — especially compared with his predecessors at the same point in their first term.
According to the poll, only 29 percent of Americans believe “leaders of foreign countries around the world have respect for the President.” That is less than half of the 67 percent of people who believed Obama was respected by foreign leaders at this point in his presidency, and it even trails the 49 percent who believed this of George W. Bush.
Trump’s pattern of disrespect and ignorance towards foreign leaders, from telling the President of France he “wants our money back” for NATO, to hanging up on the Prime Minister of Australia, to inappropriately hugging the Prime Minister of Japan, to asking an aide what the START Treaty is while on the phone with Vladimir Putin, are taking their toll. Meanwhile, policies like his Muslim travel ban are provoking international condemnation.
The American people have noticed — and the Gallup poll is a testament to our national anxiety.