Prime Minister Justin Trudeau avoided giving his opinion about President Donald Trump being misogynistic on Tuesday during the Liberal cabinet retreat in Calgary.
If Americans had a choice, many of them would choose Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as their president over Donald Trump, according to an Ipsos poll conducted exclusively for Global News.
It found that more Americans agree (40 per cent) than disagree (33 per cent) that they’d prefer to have Trudeau than Trump in the White House, while about a third of respondents (27 per cent) didn’t have an opinion either way.
One of the reasons they feel this way is that half of the American population that didn’t vote for Trump were “really quite depressed” about his actions in office, Darrell Bricker, CEO of Ipsos Public Affairs, told Global News.
Trudeau, he said, communicates a “sense of hope” in contrast to Trump, and “for those voters he compares quite favourably,” Bricker added.
“Part of it is Trudeau on his own, part of it is what’s happening in the U.S. right now.”
American respondents’ preference for Trudeau was just one finding in a wide-ranging survey that gauged U.S. opinion of Canada and its prime minister.
Many Americans seemed to have a relatively high awareness of Trudeau compared to his predecessor, ex-prime minister Stephen Harper.
It found just over four in 10 Americans (44 per cent) saying they’re familiar with Trudeau, while only 17 per cent of people in this survey knew who Harper was.
Americans were also more aware of Trudeau than they were of Neil Gorsuch (36 per cent), Trump’s nominee for the U.S. Supreme Court, as well as TV personality and Conservative leadership candidate Kevin O’Leary (30 per cent).
The survey also found that Americans were similarly aware of Trudeau as they were of U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (49 per cent).
All of these men, however, were well behind awareness of U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, at 72 per cent.
Americans generally seemed to have favourable opinions of Trudeau. More of them agreed (43 per cent) than disagreed (16 per cent) that they approve of his performance as prime minister.
They disagreed (34 per cent) more than they agreed (26 per cent) that his policies were making North America more open to terrorists.
Most of them were of the opinion (39 per cent) that Trudeau would be able to stand up to Trump, while 27 per cent felt otherwise. Thirty-four per cent of Americans were undecided on this point.
Meanwhile, four in 10 of American respondents (41 per cent) said Canada should take in refugees that aren’t being admitted to the U.S. due to Trump’s travel ban.
One in three respondents disagreed.
According to the poll, seven per cent revealed they’ve seriously thought about moving to Canada, while four per cent said they’ve actually looked into it.
On the surface, that doesn’t seem to be a large number. Bricker, however, noted that about three per cent of the world’s people don’t live in the countries they were born in.
So the seven per cent who’ve thought about moving “would be more than twice the expat population for the world,” Bricker said.
“That’s not a particularly small number.”
The positive impression that Americans have of Trudeau appears to have translated into strong feelings about Canada more generally.
A vast majority of Americans (78 per cent) agreed that when Canada expresses a position on a policy, they see it as “Canada speaking with appropriate moral authority since it is an important country in the world.”
Meanwhile, only 22 per cent said that when Canada speaks up, the Great White North is “speaking with a false sense of self-importance because it really isn’t that important a country in the world.”
Americans also showed a high opinion of Canada’s military.
“Canada spends enough on its military and is able to adequately provide for its own security, and to contribute meaningfully to its military alliances,” agreed six in 10 (58 per cent) respondents.
About four of 10 Americans (42 per cent) agreed more with the statement, “Canada doesn’t spend enough on its military and relies too heavily on the United States to protect itself.”
Exclusive Global News Ipsos polls are protected by copyright. The information and/or data may only be rebroadcast or republished with full and proper credit and attribution to “Global News Ipsos.” This poll was conducted between Feb. 3 and Feb. 6, 2017, with a sample of 1,004 adults aged 18+ from the continental U.S., Alaska and Hawaii. The sample was randomly drawn from Ipsos’ online panel, partner online panel sources, and “river” sampling. Ipsos does not rely on a population frame in the traditional sense. It uses fixed sample targets, unique to each study, in drawing sample. After a sample has been obtained from the Ipsos panel, Ipsos calibrates respondent characteristics to be representative of the U.S. population using standard procedures such as raking-ratio adjustments. The source of these population targets is U.S. Census 2015 American Community Survey data. The sample drawn for this study reflects fixed sample targets on demographics. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll has a credibility interval of plus or minus 3.5 per centage points for all respondents.
-Jesse Ferreras, National Online Journalist, Global News