Login ID:
Partner Login
Contact Us : 7066511911

Voters Express More Concern Over President's Russia Ties -- WSJ

25 Feb 2017 7:32 am
By Michael C. Bender 

President Donald Trump's ties to Russia are becomingly slightly more concerning to Americans, including significant portions of his own political base, and yet remain a low-priority issue for many people, a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll finds.

The poll found that 38% of Americans believe Mr. Trump's relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin is too friendly and inappropriate for a U.S. president, up 5 percentage points from January. But nearly one-third said they still have no opinion on the question, which Mr. Trump faced throughout the presidential campaign and much of his first month at the White House.

Still, the open questions about the relationship between Mr. Trump and his campaign team and Mr. Putin and his government are causing some concern among the voters who helped tip the November election for Mr. Trump.

Among working-class, white voters, 34% said the relationship between the two presidents was too friendly, compared with 19% who said the same last month. Among white, independent voters, 31% said the ties are inappropriate, which contrasts with 16% last month.

Meanwhile, more than half of Americans said that Congress should investigate a pair of questions involving Russia: Whether there was contact between the Kremlin and the Trump campaign last year, and whether Moscow interfered with the 2016 presidential election.

But supporting a congressional investigation sets a low bar for interest in the issue, said Bill McInturff, a Republican pollster who conducted the Journal/NBC News survey with Democrat Fred Yang.

He noted that though the matter has been in the news for months, 32% of Americans have no opinion of the Trump-Putin relationship. "The Russia story has yet to fully engage the American electorate as an immediate concern," Mr. McInturff said. "It's not something that is capturing their attention or that deeply bothers them."

Mr. Trump's relations with Russia have been a consistent story line for much of the past year. Mr. Trump said he demanded the resignation of former Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn, after only 24 days on the job as national security adviser, because Mr. Flynn had mischaracterized to Vice President Mike Pence whether he had discussed U.S. economic sanctions with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak before the new administration was sworn in.

The Trump administration has swung sharply on its statements about Russia. Mr. Trump has said he wants to pursue more cooperation, particularly on Syria and counterterrorism. But key members of his administration, including Vice President Mike Pence and Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, in recent days have emphasized the threat posed by Russia.

The survey of 1,000 adults was conducted from Feb. 18-22 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

Write to Michael C. Bender at Mike.Bender@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

February 25, 2017 02:32 ET (07:32 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2017 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
Top 5 Special Reports
USD/INR (Jul 20) Distributional Chart Pattern / Top ...
USD/INR (Jul 20) Distributional Chart Pattern / Top ...
USD/INR (Jul 20) Distributional Chart Pattern / Top ...
Charts Indicate Declining Refining Margins in White Su...
Weekly: ICE Sugar Slides on Weak Whites, Dull Demand & ...