08/09/2017 12:50 EDT | Updated 08/09/2017 12:50 EDT

Canadians Have Worse Impression Of U.S. Government Than China: Abacus Poll


Carlos Barria / Reuters
U.S. President Donald Trump reacts as he boards Marine One helicopter while departing for vacation in Bedminster, New Jersey on Aug. 4, 2017.

A new survey from Abacus Data says Canadians have a worse impression of the U.S. government than its Chinese counterpart.

And this was before President Donald Trump promised North Korea "fire and fury" on Tuesday.

The polling firm's survey asked Canadians for their impressions of several foreign governments. Respondents were most favourable of the government of Japan, followed by Mexico. At the bottom of the list is Russia with the U.S. doing just slightly better:

Abacus Data

A big(league) finding here is that 49 per cent of respondents said they had a "very negative" impression of the U.S., while 40 per cent said the same about Russia. Twenty-two per cent said they had a similar impression of China's government.

This development seems to have dumbfounded one of the survey's authors, David Coletto.

"The Trump era continues to confound," he said in a release accompanying the survey. "I can't recall a time, at least in my life, when more Canadians would have had a more negative view of the U.S. government than of the Russian government."

Co-author Bruce Anderson said it was "remarkable" to see Canadians having more favourable views of China and Russia than of the "passionate defender of individual freedoms" down south.

"While we haven't measured exactly the same question in the past — it seems reasonable to assume that the current Canadian public view of the Trump administration marks a significant break with past attitudes," he said in the release.

The Trump era continues to confound.

Previous polls measuring Canadian attitudes toward the U.S. in the Trump era have returned similarly unflattering sentiments.

In May, a poll from Environics Institute found only 44 per cent of respondents had a positive view of Canada's neighbour. That's down from 77 per cent in 2012.

And in April, just three months into Trump's presidency, a survey from Abacus found that 80 per cent of respondents disagreed with the notion that "Canada should try to be more like the United States."

That same poll also had some revealing insights into Canadian attitudes toward the U.S. and China. Check them out in the graphic below:

Abacus Data

The latest Abacus poll was conducted online between Aug. 4 and 7 with 2,000 adults chosen from a representative panel of more than 500,000 Canadians. Abacus says a similar poll would carry a margin of error of plus or minus 2.2 per cent, 19 times out of 20.