April 6th, 2009
12:50 PM ET
5 years ago

Poll: Americans think Obama helps image abroad

 The president is in Turkey Monday meeting with that country's lawmakers.
The president is in Turkey Monday meeting with that country's lawmakers.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama earned high marks for diplomacy during his first overseas trip, and a majority of Americans think that he will return home Tuesday with some accomplishments in his pocket.

A large majority, 79 percent, said people in other countries will have a more positive view of the U.S. because of Obama, while only 19 percent said it would be more negative, according to a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll released Monday.

Asked whether Obama has accomplished anything on his trip, 16 percent said that he had accomplished a great deal, while 45 percent thought he had accomplished a fair amount during this trip that took him to the European Union Summit in the Czech Republic, the G20 Summit in England, and the NATO Summit in France.

"The American public seems to think that Obama's primary achievement on his trip so far was increasing goodwill rather than winning specific concessions from other countries," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Obama seems to have made a good first impression on the world stage, and Americans appear to have noticed."

The president is in Turkey Monday meeting with that country's lawmakers. This is Obama's second foreign trip since being sworn in as president. He visited Canada for a day trip in February.

The CNN/ORC Poll of 1,023 adult Americans was conducted April 3- 5 of plus or minus 3 percent.


Filed under: Polls
soundoff (234 Responses)
  1. arithmetic is liberal

    matt April 6th, 2009 1:04 pm ET

    The Feel-Good President went overseas and testified to the World about how bad things were under the former President. This made the World feel good about America. It did nothing to ensure that the rest of the world would be economically solvent, or to ensure that we would not be the only country fighting in Afghanistan.

    But hey, everyone feels good now.

    And when people feel good about us, they trade with us which means more jobs and money for you and me. You have to finesse in this life to get anything done.

    But I guess for you, Bush's bull-in-a-china-shop diplomacy was better?

    April 6, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  2. ray ray

    Isn't it so nice???

    Now – instead of frowning when other countries say "NO" to offering aid or help... countries smile when saying "NO".

    (eyes rolling)

    You Obamabots are delusional. Obama got NOTHING..NADA..ZIP from other nations.

    North Korea launched their missile.

    No extra foreign stimulus.

    No help in Afghanistan.

    So WHAT exactly does Obama buy us?? The same thing he GIVES us – empty smiles.

    April 6, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  3. arithmetic is liberal

    And where does the 19% who disapprove go?

    Why, to the Political Ticker, no doubt!!

    April 6, 2009 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  4. Andi

    He did NOT make us look like wimps. Wake up people. In general, America HAS been arrogant regarding the rest of the world. Look how many posters on many different threads say things like 'I don't care what the rest of the world thinks about us' or 'just nuke 'em'. Listen up, people – we are no longer 'top dog' in the world, our saber-rattling intimidates no one. Americans travel overseas and get angry when people can't speak English or make fun of the way they live. Look around you – we are NOT the center of the universe.

    It's high time we started acting like we are part of a global community, instead of the big bully on the playground. Whether a person cares what the rest of the world thinks is moot, because it matters, like it or not. Take the blinders off.

    For so many years we've ignored the rest of the world unless it affected us financially and look what happens – 9/11. Running around beating your chests is not patriotic, it's very short-sighted. You might think you look cool, but you look like fool.

    April 6, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  5. usualone

    When I was in Europe 2 years ago, it was clear that some Europeans with whom I talked to were wishing for a different U.S. President. They were almost, if not, longing for a change. Mr. Obama has to be a wonderful fresh face for them. He shows we are human and not above other people. We can be tough, and still not be arrogant.

    April 6, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  6. FREEMAN

    He improved our relationship with the world. They don't hate US anymore. Thank you Mr. President.

    April 6, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  7. Ambrose Smith, Borrego Springs, California

    Obama has respect. Bush/Cheney had pretend respect.

    April 6, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  8. gl, Pittsburgh

    David Frum, a former speechwriter for President Bush and founder of Newmajority.com, has a harsh critique of President Barack Obama's trip abroad, saying he accomplished "nothing that he wanted."

    I guest he still living in the stone age like most of the Repbulicans..

    YES OBAMA CAN AND THE REPUBLICAN TALIBAN IS JEALOUS!

    April 6, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  9. andrea

    Robin,what the heck are you talking about. my sister in Germany told me that Europe went just nuts over his visit. They like him, they respect him, nothing whimpy about that. he is liked, he is very smart, get over it.

    April 6, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  10. Jackie in Dallas

    Robin, he didn't make us look like wimps (learn to spell!), he made us look like responsible adults.

    Gary, DEFINITELY agree with you. One of the good things is that he did NOT try and take over the G20 summit; he worked with his counterparts from around the world, and didn't try and hog the limelight. I also think he did a great job!

    April 6, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  11. Laverne

    @ Robin: It is unfortunate that you and others somehow equate tough, arrogant talk as strong and powerful. POTUS did exactly what he needed to do and he did not have to do it in such a way that offends the whole world. Unless you have been in a coma for the past 8 years, the way the world view America is right down disgraceful. The president, was honest, yet direct when talking about America. He did not criticize others without criticizing our own first. What he has done is humbled himself as leader. Meek does not mean weak and toughness does not have to equate to arrogance. The race is not given to the strong and swift, but to the one who endures to the end!

    April 6, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  12. jonnierae

    Yes, and I like the way he went to the people as well as to the leaders. It is obvious that the world sees him as willing to work, willing to listen, willing to push for peace and prosperity for all peoples. I am so proud that he is our President and Michelle is our First Lady. When a leader is respected and well-liked, it goes a long way to achieve diplomatic goals. I think the summit was successful. A blueprint to build on. Everyone has been so on his case since day one, it is getting sickening. Taking his temperature everyday. Nobody ever did that with Bush. Maybe because nobody expected much from him, and look what we got!!! Disaster. I think Obama is being held to a higher standard, but I think he is used to that, being who he is. I wish everyone would focus on one thing: how to get more jobs going in the USA.

    April 6, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  13. Indigo

    Certainly president Obama is helping to improve our image overseas.
    He is doing what should be done. Reaching out to others, extending courtesy and respect. What could possibly be wrong with that? Strength doesn't come through demonstration of might always. You would think we would have learned that by now. We can't go around starting fights with every country and expect everyone to show us respect in return.

    We already have two wars going. We can't afford another.
    We need to try a little diplomacy and respect, after all that would be something new.

    Way to go President Obama!!!

    April 6, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  14. Realistic Democrat

    The main reason Obama enjoys his overseas celebrity status is that he basically throws the U.S. under a bus in every speech. While in France, saying that the US was arrogant to enter WW2 is inexcusable. That is a slap to America's veterans and the U.S. as a whole. Even as a Democrat, I am disgusted.

    April 6, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  15. Bob the Observer

    Do you not see how the ethnocentrism even plays out in the headline? "Americans think Obama helps image abroad." What "Americans think" has nothing to do with what the rest of the world things.

    What "Americans think" does not matter. Why not give us an article on what "people abroad" think?

    This article just perpetuates the isolationist, "we are the only ones who count" mindset that has made so many people hate us in the first place.

    April 6, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  16. gt

    obama is great ... if you like warm milk....

    April 6, 2009 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  17. simp

    @ROBIN "HE MADE US LOOK LIKE WHIMPS"

    ARE YOU SERIOUS? AND GW MADE US LOOK LIKE WHAT???????
    AT LEAST THIS MAN IS RESPECTED,GW WAS A JOKE AND EVERYBODY KNOWS IT, WELL ALMOST EVERYBODY WITH THE EXCEPTION OF YOU, CLOWN.

    April 6, 2009 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  18. Shooky

    I don't think so. I think he's a dork.

    April 6, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  19. Jane

    Can you tell me why in the world would Obama go to Europe and continue to criticize Bush? Does he not have anything else to say. His trip was a disgrace for the American people – other than the clothes his wife wore (which is what we would expect) he had nothing to say unless he was criticizing the former administration. Tell him to get off of Bush – Bush is gone – the problems are now his and people are surely beginning to notice. One person say to me, "I simply cannot believe we let this happen to America", but we did and now we cannot do anything about it for 4 years.

    April 6, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  20. Al-NY,NY

    @Robin...because he was man enough to admit that America is not "perfect" and mistakes actually happen??? The idiot in Chief he replaced would not only admit HE made any mistakes but heaven-forbid if the "holier than thou/never-ever do anything wrong" USA ever was mistaken. You righties have a truly warped sense of self. "We are great. We are perfect. You must follow our lead or you will suffer" The days of Texas cowboy diplomacy are over my friend. America does make mistakes...and the best example was the responsibility of the fools that voted for that moron not once, but twice

    April 6, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  21. Obamacratic

    Thanks Mr. President for not sugar coating your words. You spoke the truth. I am very proud of you.

    April 6, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  22. Expat American

    The videos of some individuals who made up the Palin Mobs at her rallies were a lasting image for some time to come. It was almost like they were proud to be so uneducated and ignorant. And the world was laughing at them.

    April 6, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  23. H-ROD

    THAT 'S BECAUSE MOST AMERICANS ARE DUMB AS COW PATTIES AND DON'T KNOW THAT WE HAVE BEEN HAD I WAS ALL FOR OBAMA CAUGHT UP IN THE HIPE!! YEA FRIST BLACK PRESIDENT BUT NOW I SEE THE GAME THE BIGGEST RIP OFF OF TAX PAYER MONEY IN HISTORY AND THEY GOT A BLACK MAN TO DO IT JUST WAIT THEY ARE GOING TO BLAME EVERTHING ON HIM !!! AND HE WILL BE THE MOST HATED MAN IN THE WORLD BAR NONE JUST WAIT IT'S THE BIGGEST PONSI GAME IN THE WORLD AND 700 BILLION IS JUST THE START!!!

    April 6, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  24. Evan

    Obama has done a great deal to improve America's reputation and international relations by not being an arrogant ass like his predecessor. Is it any reason people, both at home and abroad, are happy to have him as president of the US? He's the absolutely opposite of the previous president. He's intelligent, poltiically savvy, well-spoken and coherent.

    April 6, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  25. obama daddy

    my boy got ya'll snowed....the empty suit groid is chip off the ol block....not worth spittin on.

    April 6, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
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