Hillary Clinton preferred as US president

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Most Europeans would prefer to see Hillary Clinton get a place in the White House than her two rivals.

7th December 2007

Asked which of 10 candidates would make the best president, Clinton received the nod from 22 per cent of the Americans asked, 24 per cent of the British, 29 per cent of the Spaniards, 30 per cent of the Italians, 35 per cent of the French and 40 per cent of the Germans.

She was far ahead of the two men who finished second, Democratic rival Barack Obama and Republican Rudy Giuliani, both of whom were supported by 12 per cent of the US respondents.

Obama finished second in France and Germany while Giuliani was the runner-up in Britain, Italy and Spain.

In a question involving only Americans, Clinton also came out ahead in voter intention, with 25 per cent of respondents saying they would vote for her, compared to 15 per cent for Giuliani and 13 per cent for Obama.

Most European respondents agreed that the election of a woman as US president would have a positive effect on the US, with support ranging from 53 to 56 per cent in Spain, Italy, France and Germany.

However, the survey by the Harris Institute for France 24 television and the Paris-based International Herald Tribune found that enthusiasm for Clinton was significantly higher among Europeans than Americans.

Significantly, Americans showed the lowest support for that idea, with only 29 per cent saying it would be positive, while 26 per cent said they thought electing a woman would have a negative effect.

The same question was posed regarding the possible election of Obama, a black man.

Between 43 per cent (Britain and Germany) and 50 per cent (Spain) of Europeans thought electing a black man would have a positive effect on the US. Only 33 per cent of Americans thought so.

The poll also revealed the depth of the unpopularity of current US President George W Bush among Europeans.

Asked if they would like it if Bush could run again for president, Europeans said overwhelmingly no, with between 72 per cent (British) and 87 per cent (French and Germans) rejecting the idea. More than two-thirds of American respondents also did not want Bush to run again.

The poll was carried out between November 1 and 14, 2007, with a total sample of 6,590 adults - including 1,075 in France, 1,114 in Germany, 1,117 in Britain, 1,100 in Italy, 1,076 in Spain and 1,108 in the US. No margin of error was provided.


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