Americans prefer Russia to France

Despite Russia's drift toward authoritarian rule, Americans feel more kindly toward that country than they do toward France, according to a poll released on Monday. The poll, conducted by Quinnipiac University, in Connecticut, said Britain, Canada, Israel, Mexico and India topped the list. The "national thermometer" survey sought the views of almost 1,900 Americans on 15 foreign countries and governing organizations.

Russia's approval rating was 47.1 percent compared with 45 percent for France. "Americans clearly still harbor some hard feelings toward France, which trails Russia and even the United Nations on the National Thermometer," said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

He said that despite concerns about outsourcing, "India ranks just after very traditional allies and neighbors, and well ahead of China." The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.3 percentage points. Voters were asked to rate foreign countries and governing organizations 0 to 100, with the highest numbers going to America's staunchest allies. The mean scores were: 1. Britain 76.4 2. Canada 70.9 3. Israel 61.8 4. Mexico 54.9 5. India 52.1 6. United Nations 50.6 7. Russia 47.1 8. France 45 9. China 41.5 10. Saudi Arabia 38.2 11. Cuba 27.2 12. Iraq 27.1 13. Palestinian government 24.6 14. North Korea 19.7 15. Iran 16.7, reports the AP.

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