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Overwhelming 70% of Americans want trade restrictions with China after coronavirus pandemic

Seventy percent of American voters want restrictions on trade with China in wake of coronavirus

Published: April 28, 2020 9:51am

Updated: April 28, 2020 5:08pm

Seventy percent of American voters say they want restrictions on trade with China, according to a new Just the News Daily Poll with Scott Rasmussen.

"There were public concerns about China’s trade practices before the pandemic. Those concerns have now escalated significantly," Rasmussen said. "The only question is how harshly we deal with the nation that most Americans believe made the pandemic worse." 

Just the News Poll, Trade Relationship with China
Just the News Daily Poll
With Scott Rasmussen

Forty-one percent of registered voters said they simply want the United States to reduce its level of trading. Eighteen percent said they want to halt trade with China until that nation has negotiated compensation for the pandemic. And 11% said they simply want to ban all trade with China. At the other extreme, 15% said they want to either expand U.S. trading with China (5%) or maintain the status quo (10% say nothing should change).

"Solid majorities of every measured demographic group want us to cut back on trading with China," Rasmussen said. "However, there are some partisan differences in emphasis." 

Twenty-one percent of Democrats said they want to either expand our trade relationship or maintain the status quo. Just 6% of Republicans agreed, along with 15% of Independents. On the other hand, 41% of Republicans said they want to halt trade until compensation is negotiated or ban trade completely. Just 18% of Democrats said they agree, along with 31% of Independents.

President Trump said Monday at the White House that his administration was undertaking "serious investigations" for actions to take against China for not stopping the coronavirus more quickly.

"There are a lot of ways you can hold them accountable," Trump said during a press briefing of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. "We're doing very serious investigations, as you probably know. And we are not happy with China. We are not happy with that whole situation. Because we believe it could have been stopped at the source. It could have been stopped quickly, and it wouldn't have spread all over the world."

Respondents were asked “When the pandemic is over, how should the United States change its trade relationship with China?" They replied as below:

  • 5% Expand our trading relationship
  • 41% Reduce our reliance on trade with China
  • 18% Halt trade until China negotiates compensation for pandemic
  • 11% Ban all trade with China
  • 10% Nothing should change
  • 15% Not Sure

The national survey of 1,200 registered voters was conducted April 23-25, 2020 by Rasmussen, a polling veteran. Margin of sampling error: +/- 2.8% for full sample. 

To see the full demographic cross-tabulations for this polling question, click below:

To see the methodology and sample demographics for this polling question, click below:


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