The majority of registered voters in battleground states agree that China poses a military and economic threat to the United States, according to a poll published Tuesday.
The poll, conducted April 20–May 2, 2020, by CRC Advisors, showed that 59 percent of those surveyed said they agreed that China poses a military threat to the United States, versus 26 percent who disagreed.
It also showed that nearly three-fourths, 74 percent, said they agreed that China poses an economic threat to the United States, versus 14 percent who disagreed.
The poll surveyed 1,000 registered voters in battleground states, including Arizona, Florida, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. It had a ±3.1 percent overall margin of error.
Anti-Chinese government sentiment has risen in the United States after it failed to contain the outbreak of a coronavirus pandemic in Wuhan, China, in December. Chinese officials destroyed early evidence of the virus and tried to censor doctors warning of its severity or publishing research about its origins.
China first informed the World Health Organization about the virus in late December but insisted that it could not be spread through human transmission until mid-January. Around that time, the first person discovered with coronavirus arrived in the United States from Wuhan.
China has tried to deflect blame for the virus and its officials have pushed conspiracies that the U.S. Army brought it to China.
But even before the pandemic, there has been growing concern in the U.S. about China’s plan to replace the United States as the world’s leading superpower by 2050.
China has launched a number of initiatives such as the Belt and Road Initiative, which aims to build trade routes from China to Europe, and China 2025, which aims to dominate key technology industries and control the future of 5G communications and manufacturing.
Meanwhile, China has militarized islands in the South China Sea, an important sea route for global shipping.
The coronavirus pandemic has exposed the extent to which the U.S. relies on China for critical supplies and certain drug ingredients.
The poll also said 78 percent of registered voters agree with moving manufacturing out of China to reduce U.S. dependency on the nation.
Republicans have launched a task force to address the threat from China. Democrats had signed on to the effort early but pulled their participation out of fear that focus on China would mean less blame on Trump for the pandemic.