Joe Biden's Approval Rating Falls Around the World

International approval of U.S. leadership declined in the wake of the final withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan in August 2021 despite making notable gains since President Joe Biden came to office.

Median approval of U.S. leadership across 46 countries and territories stood at 49 percent in early August last year but appears to have slipped back in the second half of 2021, according to a new report from Gallup.

Gallup reported on Tuesday that median approval for U.S. leadership stood at 43 percent across 70 countries and territories in the second six months of 2021—after the drawdown of U.S. forces from Afghanistan, which ended on August 30.

Gallup pointed out that it was not entirely clear what effect the withdrawal from Afghanistan had had on approval of U.S. leadership and pointed to the fact that some countries surveyed in the second half of 2021—such as Iran—have previously rated U.S. leadership poorly.

The withdrawal from Afghanistan was highly controversial and garnered strong criticism mainly because the Taliban quickly gained control of the country amid chaotic scenes in the capital, Kabul, and because of the deaths of 13 U.S. service members and around 170 Afghans in a suicide bombing at the city's airport.

Nonetheless, Biden still enjoys higher global approval than former President Donald Trump.

President Biden ended his first year with a median approval rating of 45 percent across 116 countries. This was higher than the rating enjoyed by Trump in the final year of his presidency, when his approval on the same measure stood at 30 percent.

Gallup also noted that Biden's approval is higher than "any of the previous ratings during the Trump administration."

Former President Barack Obama set a record for global approval during his first year in office in 2009, when he recorded 49 percent approval. Biden matched that figure in the first six months of his term.

Gallup reported on Tuesday that U.S. leadership recorded positive ratings in 24 of the 70 countries surveyed in the second half of 2021 and that in 23 of those countries, approval of U.S. leadership had risen by 10 percent or more since last year.

The U.S. also enjoyed significantly greater approval than Russia or China. Russia's approval rating stood at 33 percent before the country launched its invasion of Ukraine, while China's approval was 30 percent. Both ratings were largely unchanged on the previous year.

Though perceptions of U.S. leadership have improved under Biden, Germany was the country that enjoyed the highest rating in the Gallup report, with 50 percent median approval across 116 countries. In 2020, Germany had a record approval of 52 percent.

The polling period ended too early to measure how the world rated the U.S. response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine

Newsweek has asked the White House for comment.

Biden Speaks at the Washington Hilton Hotel
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks during the annual North Americas Building Trades Unions Legislative Conference at the Washington Hilton Hotel on April 6, 2022 in Washington, DC. Global approval of U.S. leadership has approved under Biden. Drew Angerer/Getty Images