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The world facing Trump

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Partisan gap in Mideast sympathies is widest in four decades

When he takes office next week, President-elect Donald Trump will inherit an array of global threats in the view of the public. About eight-in-ten Americans (79%) say ISIS poses a major threat to the well-being of the United States, and 71% say the same about cyberattacks from other countries.

Nearly two-thirds (64%) view North Korea’s nuclear program as a major threat, while comparable shares regard the power and influence of Russia (54%) and of China (52%) as major threats.

About half (52%) say global climate change represents a major threat, and 46% say the same about the large number of refugees leaving Iraq and Syria.

The new national survey by Pew Research Center, conducted Jan. 4-9 among 1,502 adults, finds only modest changes since last year in perceptions of these threats, but there are a few notable exceptions. Last April, just 42% viewed “tensions with Russia” as a major threat; today, 54% say the same about “Russia’s power and influence.”

Over the same period, the share of the public describing the refugee movement from countries such as Iraq and Syria as a major threat to the United States has declined nine percentage points (from 55% to 46%).


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