Public Agenda Confidence in U.S. Foreign Policy Index 2006

Energy Dependence Joins Iraq as Top Public Concern

Overall confidence in U.S. foreign policy has declined, with casualties in Iraq remaining the public's top concern. But the consequences of U.S. energy dependency is now a close second.

Released jointly by Public Agenda and Foreign Affairs, these findings are highlights of the Public Agenda Confidence in U.S. Foreign Policy Index. The Index is designed to explore the public's long-term judgments and beliefs about America's role in the world. The Index is supported with funding from the Ford Foundation.

Facts, Figures & Analysis

The Tipping Points
In the May/June issue of Foreign Affairs, Public Agenda Chairman Dan Yankelovich analyzes the data of the Confidence in U.S. Foreign Policy Index, saying, "The public's confidence in U.S. foreign policy has drifted downward since the first survey."

Increasing Concern on Energy Dependence
The portion of those who "worry a lot" about oil independence has increased from 42 percent to 55 percent — putting it at the top of our "worry scale" of 18 foreign policy issues.

Democracy, Disaster and Priorities Graph

Democracy, Disaster and Priorities

Most of the public ranks promoting democracy in other countries as the least important of U.S. foreign policy goals.

Do you think that the U.S. can effectively help other countries become democratic, or is democracy something that countries only come to on their own when they're ready for it?

What Worries Americans Most

What Has Americans Most Worried Graph

Less Urgency on Relations with Muslim World
The intensity of American's concern with the Muslim world seems to have declined since the last survey, with fewer saying they worry "a lot" about this issue. Still, nearly two-thirds (64 percent) give a "C" or worse on our relations with the Muslim world.


Illegal Immigration and Jobs
The public believes that the government can do something about immigration but doubt that anyone can stop outsourcing.

The Whole Truth?
Fifty percent of the public does not think that the government has been truthful about why we invaded Iraq.


Failing on Global Warming Graph

Failing on Global Warming
More than

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