The worldwide approval of U.S. leadership under President Barack Obama dropped in 2012.
According to a Gallup poll released on Wednesday, when asked whether they “approve or disapprove of the job performance of the leadership of the United States,” the median approval across 130 countries dropped from 49 percent in 2011 to 41 percent in 2012.
In Europe, specifically, U.S. leadership approval fell by six percent – down from 42 percent in 2011 to 36 percent in 2012. Gallup suggested that this was due to America’s impact, perceived or otherwise, on Europe’s ongoing financial crisis.
Similarly, U.S. leadership remains unpopular in Africa – with Libya being the only notable exception for obvious reasons. Writes Gallup: “A majority of Libyans (54%) surveyed before the attack in Benghazi approved of U.S. leadership in 2012. In Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Egypt, no more than one-third approved and ratings remained mostly flat. Algerian approval of U.S. leadership is down slightly since 2011, dropping from 37% to 30%.”
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Interestingly enough, approval of U.S. leadership in Mexico has increased by 11 percent over the past year – up from 26 percent to 37 percent.
“Some of the increase may stem from Mexicans’ optimism about future U.S.-Mexican relations after Obama welcomed then-President-elect Enrique Pena Nieto to the White House in late November 2012 and pledged cooperation on trade and immigration reform,” Gallup wrote.
Despite the notable dips, for the most part, worldwide approval of the U.S. is higher now than it was towards the latter part of the George W. Bush presidency.