Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Less than half of U.S. voters still see a need for the United States to belong to NATO, and most question whether America’s allies in the long-standing alliance will give their full support in Afghanistan and Libya.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 49% of Likely U.S. Voters believe America still should belong to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, formed in 1949 to counter the Communist Soviet Union. Twenty-seven percent (27%) do not see a need for the United States to still belong to the alliance now that the Soviet Union is gone. Twenty-four percent (24%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
Just 46% hold even a somewhat favorable view of NATO while 37% view the organization unfavorably. Overall attitudes are quite soft as just 7% hold a Very Favorable opinion of the group while 12% express a Very Unfavorable view. Nearly two-thirds (64%) fall somewhere in between.
Sixty-two percent (62%) of Democrats have a favorable view of NATO, while most Republicans (52%) view the alliance unfavorably. Voters not affiliated with either party are almost evenly divided in their assessments.
Only 35% of voters are even somewhat confident that NATO will do all it can to help the United States win in Afghanistan and Libya. Fifty-six percent (56%) do not share that confidence. These findings include nine percent (9%) who are Very Confident NATO will do all it can and 15% who are Not At All Confident of that.
Collectively, these results suggest that skepticism about NATO allies has held steady at least since December 2009.
Retiring U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates was highly critical of the defense commitment of the other NATO allies in his farewell remarks to the group late last week.
The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on June 12-13, 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.Rasmussen subscribers can log in to read the rest of this article.
ORLimited Time Discount Offer: $12.00/6 months
Rasmussen Reports is a media company specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion information.
We conduct public opinion polls on a variety of topics to inform our audience on events in the news and other topics of interest. To ensure editorial control and independence, we pay for the polls ourselves and generate revenue through the sale of subscriptions, sponsorships, and advertising. Nightly polling on politics, business and lifestyle topics provides the content to update the Rasmussen Reports web site many times each day. If it's in the news, it's in our polls. Additionally, the data drives a daily update newsletter and various media outlets across the country.
Some information, including the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll and commentaries are available for free to the general public. Subscriptions are available for $4.95 a month or 34.95 a year that provide subscribers with exclusive access to more than 20 stories per week on upcoming elections, consumer confidence, and issues that affect us all. For those who are really into the numbers, Platinum Members can review demographic crosstabs and a full history of our data.
To learn more about our methodology, click here.