March 21 (UPI) -- The majority of Americans believe trade with other countries has a positive effect on the U.S. economy, a new Gallup poll finds.
The survey released Thursday found 51 percent of Americans believe trade is a positive rather than a negative. But 42 percent said it will have a negative effect on U.S. workers. And 74 percent believe trade is an opportunity for growth rather than a threat, the highest result since Gallup has asked this question.
President Donald Trump has emphasized new trade deals with China, Japan, Mexico, Canada and other countries, scrapping deals he believes weren't fair to the United States.
Gallup's results are based on a Feb. 12-28 poll that asked Americans for their views on trade. It didn't ask about Trump's trade policy.
The results seem to be the same across party lines, too, as its an issue that typically has bipartisan support. The survey found 67 percent of older men, but only 39 percent of younger women, believe trade has a positive effect on U.S. jobs.
Child labor laws are a major factor for 72 percent of those surveyed. A country's human rights record is also important with 68 percent saying that should be taken into account. Slightly fewer believe a country's laws on worker health and safety should be a factor. A country's environmental record is less important with 53 percent saying that's a great deal.
"Americans' opinions about trade are as positive as they have been in at least 25 years, and they see trade as being more beneficial than harmful to a lot of the aspects of the economy it affects," Gallup said in its report. "Americans are less likely to think trade has a positive impact on the job market, but still more see it as helping rather than hurting American workers' ability to get jobs."
Gallup says most Democrats agree with Trump's decision to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership in favor of a renegotiated deal with the Asian nations. But they disagree with his "America First" approach to foreign policy.