Democracy Arsenal

« Do Republicans Need their Own DLC? | Main | The Ultimate Asymmetric Advantage »

August 16, 2007

Would Responding to the Electorate Be So Bad?
Posted by David Shorr

In response to Shadi's post from yesterday, let me say that Giuliani's approach is not going to win him very broad popular support. With the help of the U. of Maryland Program on International Public Attitudes, we can see where the public stands.

For instance, in the section of the PIPA report dealing with the world's perceptions of us (and why they matter), the public sees a real problem with the stand tall / get tough approach. Here's how PIPA summarize the public's attitude:

Large majorities believe that the US is viewed negatively by people in other countries and see this as derived primarily from the current US foreign policy not American values. Most see goodwill towards the United States as important for US national security. Most Americans believe that people around the world are growing more afraid that the US will use force against them and that this diminishes US national security and increases the likelihood that countries will pursue WMDs.

[Disclosure: The Stanley Foundation was the client for some of this polling, with me as the point of contact.]


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Would Responding to the Electorate Be So Bad?:


This reminds me of Senator Wayne Morse saying in 1964 that foreign policy formulation belongs to the American people. (video)

The people are smarter than the country's leaders give them credit for, and possibly just plain smarter.

I debated a similar issue with a friend the other day. I thought the U.S. system probably needs a "no confidence" rather than "impeachment" option to shift power back from the Presidency to the Congress. (Not looking to debate that option at the moment, just giving context).

His counterpoint was that such a vote might have removed Truman from office and gotten us in a direct war rather than a proxy war with China. I thought that was a fair point, but Truman was before the Presidency was really empowered by television. In addition, I think it is fair to say that over the latter half of the 20th century, the rise of television media has probably made us more casualty averse and thus less bellicose.

Post a comment

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In

Guest Contributors
Sign-up to receive a weekly digest of the latest posts from Democracy Arsenal.
Powered by TypePad


The opinions voiced on Democracy Arsenal are those of the individual authors and do not represent the views of any other organization or institution with which any author may be affiliated.
Read Terms of Use