Student Scholar Symposium Abstracts and Posters

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 5-2019

Faculty Advisor(s)

Ann Gordon


In recent years, especially under President Trump’s administration, United States foreign policy has seen a great deal of changes, as has public opinion on U.S. foreign policy. Foreign policy faces increasing criticism and scrutiny as information about international trade and relationships between countries becomes more accessible to the public. This paper will address public opinion on current U.S. foreign policy with regards to three countries – China, Russia, and Mexico – and how it may differ based on variables such as trust in media, ideology, and belief that immigration increases the U.S. crime rate. These variables are vital to understanding the public’s voting behaviors and tendencies, as well as their stances on public policy, including foreign policy. Since public opinion has a large effect on election outcomes, it is important to understand how the aforementioned variables can change a voter’s stance on foreign policy, as this alters how a candidate markets themselves to a specific audience while campaigning. Foreign policy decisions are often made in line with public opinion, which holds politicians accountable to their constituents. Therefore, it is increasingly important to understand that a person’s ability to understand U.S. foreign policy and develop an informed opinion regarding policy decisions is largely a result of the variables mentioned above. This paper will address the effects of these variables on an individual’s opinions regarding the United States foreign policy for the three countries listed above.


Presented at the Spring 2019 Student Scholar Symposium at Chapman University.