American Support for US Bases in Japan at Record High
American public opinion toward Japan has never been warmer, Council data show.
- Two-thirds of Americans (67%) support long-term US bases in Japan, an all-time high in Chicago Council Surveys dating back to 2002.
- Support for US bases in Japan includes majorities of Republicans (72%), Independents (66%), and Democrats (64%).
- American feelings toward Japan are also the warmest on record. On a 0-100 scale, Americans give Japan an average score of 67, the highest in Council polls dating back to 1978.
Broad Bipartisan Support for US Bases in Japan
The 2022 Chicago Council Survey finds that two-thirds of Americans (67%) say the United States should have long-term military bases in Japan. This is the highest level of support recorded in Council polling dating back to 2002, when the question was first asked. Support for US bases in Japan crosses party lines, with majorities of Republicans (72%), Independents (66%), and Democrats (64%) all saying the United States should maintain bases in Japan.
Americans’ Views of Japan Have Never Been Warmer
At the same time that American support for bases is hitting a high, feelings toward Japan are also at record levels. On a feeling thermometer scale from 0 to 100, with 0 representing a very unfavorable feeling and 100 a very favorable feeling, Americans give Japan an average score of 66. This is the highest rating recorded in Chicago Council Surveys since the question was first asked in 1978. There is very little differentiation across party lines: Independents (67), Democrats (66), and Republicans (64) all give Japan similarly warm ratings.
This analysis is based on data from the 2022 Chicago Council Survey of the American public on foreign policy, a project of the Lester Crown Center on US Foreign Policy. The 2022 Chicago Council Survey was conducted July 15–August 1, 2022, by Ipsos using its large-scale nationwide online research panel, KnowledgePanel, in both English and Spanish among a weighted national sample of 3,106 adults 18 or older living in all 50 US states and the District of Columbia. The margin of sampling error for the full sample is +/- 1.8 percentage points. The margin of error is higher for partisan subgroups or for partial-sample items.
Partisan identification is based on how respondents answered a standard partisan self-identification question: “Generally speaking, do you think of yourself as a Republican, a Democrat, an Independent, or what?”
The 2022 Chicago Council Survey is made possible by the generous support of the Crown family and the Korea Foundation.
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