WASHINGTON — A majority of Americans now approve of President Donald Trump's handling of U.S. relations with North Korea, a change that comes after his historic summit with that country's leader, Kim Jong Un. But most don't believe Kim is serious about addressing the international concerns about his country's nuclear weapons program.
A new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research released Thursday finds that 55
The survey was conducted immediately after Trump concluded a one-day meeting with Kim, the first between a U.S. and North Korean leader in six decades of hostility, at which they agreed North Korea would work toward denuclearization in exchange for U.S. security guarantees.
The positive feelings about the summit among Americans don't appear to have made a dent in Trump's overall approval rating, which stands at just 41
Yet even people unhappy with Trump overall are willing to admire his efforts at detente with North Korea. Last September, Trump taunted Kim as "Rocket Man" in a speech at the United Nations, during which he vowed to "totally destroy North Korea" if the U.S. was forced to defend itself or its allies. Last week, after meeting with Kim, he tweeted, "there is no longer a nuclear threat from North Korea."
"I hate to give Donald Trump any credit, but the fact is he was able to sit down with the man and possibly get the volume of that threat turned down significantly," said Susan Leo, 66, a retired minister from Santa Cruz, California, who supported Democrat Hillary Clinton for president.
Still, she added, when she considers the big picture, Trump's presidency is "a nightmare. There's absolutely no integrity in his life and in his presidency overall."
Leo isn't alone in having such split views of the president. While only 9
Americans also have mixed feelings about Trump's announcement that he would end military exercises with South Korea while negotiations with North Korea are ongoing, with about 3 in 10 in
Even as they broadly give Trump solid reviews for the summit, Americans remain skeptical about what sort of deal he may ultimately reach with a country controlled by what he once called a "depraved regime." Trump's critics have responded to his confidence in the agreement struck with Kim at the summit with reminders that North Korea has never signed such a deal that it didn't later break.
A majority of Americans — 52
Roger D'Aquin, a retired security manager from New Orleans who voted for libertarian candidate Gary Johnson in 2016, said that he thought Trump's tactics with Kim worked, but added, "I have no confidence that Kim wants to
"Overall Trump handled that well," said D'Aquin, 50, who said he was happy Trump won the election and that he gave him a "C'' for the job so far.
Even among Republicans, just 25
Trump's meeting with Kim came on the heels of his combative G-7 meeting with traditional U.S. allies, including Canada and the United Kingdom. After departing that gathering in Quebec, Trump attacked Justin Trudeau as "dishonest" and "weak" after the Canadian prime minister told reporters his government would retaliate against new U.S. tariffs it viewed as unfair.
Asked about Trump's potential options at the negotiating table in future talks with North Korea, more Americans say they'd oppose than
Kim Oldfield, 67, of Culverville, California, a registered Independent who voted for Trump, said she was fine Kim coming to Washington as part of a nuclear deal.
"Sure, why not," she said. "There's a first time for everything."
The AP-NORC poll of 1,109 adults was conducted June 13-18 using a sample drawn from NORC's probability-based AmeriSpeak Panel, which is designed to be representative of the U.S. population. The margin of sampling error for all respondents is plus or minus 4.1 percentage points.
Respondents were first selected randomly using address-based sampling methods, and later interviewed online or by phone.
AP-NORC Center: http://www.apnorc.org/
Emily Swanson And Catherine Lucey, The Associated Press