By Jennifer De Pinto, Fred Backus, Kabir Khanna and Anthony Salvanto
Most Americans continue to see North Korea as a threat that can be contained, though the number who say it requires military action has risen slightly in recent weeks. A majority disapprove of President Trump’s handling of the situation, and more voice concern that the U.S. would go to war too quickly than too slowly. Republicans approve of the president’s handling, and worry the U.S. will not act fast enough.
A clear partisan division underlies the differing concerns about North Korea.
A majority of Americans continue to see North Korea’s weapons program as a threat, but one that can be contained for now. Still, the percentage that think the North Korea situation requires immediate military action has gone up slightly from last month, from 29 percent in August to 33 percent today, its highest measure.
This shift is largely among independents, whose percent seeing it as a threat requiring action has risen seven points – from 24 percent last month to 31 percent today. Like last month, Republicans are split on this. Few Democrats see it as requiring military action now.
Overall, most Americans disapprove of the way President Trump is handling the situation with North Korea. Here again, large partisan divisions are evident, with 79 percent of Republicans approving and 83 percent of Democrats disapproving.
More broadly, a majority of Americans now think Mr. Trump is making the U.S. image in the world weaker rather than stronger. Fifty-two percent think so, up from 46 percent in April.
This measure it largely tied to how Americans view the president’s handling of the North Korea situation. Those who approve of the president’s handling of North Korea think he is making the U.S. image in the world stronger, while the opposite is true of those who disapprove.
The president’s job performance
President Trump’s approval rating on the response tois positive, but it’s the only positive measure of those tested. His rating for is the lowest this poll tested — at just 29 percent. Immigration meets just 35 percent approval. His overall approval rating, also now at 35 percent, is one point lower than August, and the lowest it has reached in this poll so far. Mr. Trump’s overall job rating has been similarly negative since June. Those who disapprove of the president overall are overwhelmingly likely to also disapprove of his handling health…