• 73% of Americans view China in a negative way.
  • More Republicans than Democrats have unfavorable perceptions of China.
  • Americans believe that the Chinese government is fair to blame for the global spread of the Coronavirus.
  • In terms of business and trade policy, Republicans and Democrats are divided over building stronger economic ties or being tougher with China.

Americans increasingly see China in a negative light. Americans including partisans — Republicans and Democrats — express unfavorable views of China, proving their perception is somewhat united throughout the country.

Americans have considered China as one of the countries under “unfriendly” terms with the USA.Though China is not regarded as the top national enemy, American’s unfavorable rating toward China is seen on the rise.

Also Read: PEW Research: Independents Outnumber Partisans in the USA

According to a Pew Research survey, 73% of American adults admit to having a negative view of the country; this figure has grown 26% since 2018. While in March, negative thoughts toward China increased 7% points because China mishandled the coronavirus outbreak leading to the global spread of COVID-19.

PEW Research Center
PEW Research Center

Both major US parties now see China much more negatively than in the recent past. Though, Republicans are more likely to show skepticism in different measures. About 83% of Republicans claim to have unfavorable views of China, while 68% of Democrats expressed the same.

Source: Survey of U.S
Source: Survey of U.S

Donald Trump and Joe Biden have been portraying China as the main issue in their campaign for the November election. As the survey was fielded in June and July during the campaign season, the impact of the campaigns on public opinion was evident in the charts.

In the latest survey, about four-in-ten Republicans mainly considered China as a competitor (53%) rather than an enemy (38%) or

Source: Survey of U.S - July 14, 2020.
Source: Survey of U.S – July 14, 2020.

partner (8%). While for Democrats, more than half regards China as a competitor (61%), an enemy (19%), and partner (19%), both garnering 19% describe China as an enemy. In comparison, 61% call it a competitor, and 19% say they consider the country a partner.

The share of Republicans who describe China as an enemy has increased 21 percentual points since 2012, compared with a more moderate increase of 8 points among Democrats.

In conclusion, Republicans are twice as likely as Democrats to describe China as an enemy, though this is a minority position in both parties.

China as the Initial Coronavirus Epicenter

An unprecedented Coronavirus turned pandemic has become an international issue that not only endangered health but also paralyzed economies. As one of the worldwide issues in 2020, Americans have scrutinized the coronavirus outbreak’s initial epicenter, tracing back to China. COVID-19 virus is widely considered to have originated from Wuhan, China.

Based on the survey, 82% of Republicans consider that China has done a bad job dealing with the outbreak, while 54% of Democrats agree with that statement.  Notably, more Americans — 90% of Republicans and 74% of Democrats — believe that the Chinese government is to blame for the global spread of the virus,as the coronavirus outbreak in China led to a global pandemic, according to them.

Source: Survey of U.S - June 16 - July 14, 2020.
Source: Survey of U.S – June 16 – July 14, 2020.

Trade War: The American Opinion

In terms of business and trade policy, American adults have been seen as divided over the choice to build a stronger relationship with China (51%) or get tougher with them (46%).

Republicans are seen double times more than Democrats to support tougher handling of the Chinese nation (66% vs. 33%). They are also about twice as much (71% vs. 37%) to urge the US government to hold China responsible for the spread of coronavirus, even if it harms or worsens relations.

Democrats, in comparison, believe that the US government should initiate the promotion of human rights in China rather than focusing on economic relations. Both Republicans and Democrats though, have expressed favor of this opinion with seven-in-ten votes.

Source: Survey of U.S - June 16 - July 14, 2020.
Source: Survey of U.S – June 16 – July 14, 2020.