- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 20, 2020

More U.S. voters say they see China as an enemy, though nearly six in 10 also say the U.S. should work with the country on combating the coronavirus pandemic, according to polling released on Wednesday.

The percentage of U.S. voters who see China as an “enemy” sits at 31%, up 11 percentage points compared to January, according to the Politico/Morning Consult poll.

Meanwhile, 23% said they see China as an ally or a friend — down 9 points.

A plurality — 48% — said China is mostly responsible for the state of the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S. because the virus originated there, while 38% said the U.S. is mostly responsible because of its poor response.

The virus was first discovered in Wuhan, China, late last year before it spread to Europe, the U.S. and elsewhere around the globe.



President Trump has repeatedly said China could have stopped the virus from spreading, though he has been vague about any retaliatory measures the U.S. might take for China’s handling of the issue.

Despite the increasing bad blood, 58% of voters said the U.S. should focus on working with China to combat the virus even if it means not holding the country responsible for its role in the pandemic.

That’s compared to 30% who said they favor holding China accountable over working together to combat the issue.

Forty percent of voters said they trust presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden more to handle relations with China, compared to 38% who said they trust Mr. Trump more.

The Trump campaign has become increasingly aggressive about casting Mr. Biden as weak on China.

Forty-two percent said they trust Mr. Biden more to handle COVID-19 in general, compared to 35% who sided with Mr. Trump.

The survey of 1,994 registered voters was taken from May 15-18 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

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