In Online Poll, the World (Except for China) Votes Obama

Romney, who once referred to the Chinese as cheaters, has an unlikely foreign ally, according to an MSN reader survey

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Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney holds a rally at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., on Nov. 5, 2012, the day before the election

Most of the world — 81% — would vote for Barack Obama, according to a new MSN poll, which surveyed 570,000 people in 36 countries.

But perhaps the most surprising result is that Mitt Romney might have an unlikely international ally: the People’s Republic of China. Fifty-two percent of the online readers polled by MSN there preferred the Republican presidential candidate, even after he accused China of being a nation of cheats and of stealing intellectual property.

(PHOTOS: The 2012 Presidential Election: A Year in Pictures)

He Wang, an MSN commentator based in China, said she thought China backed Romney because the Chinese are more able to relate to the businessman and called Obama “too idealistic.”

However, even in the Middle East, where American foreign policy is often criticized, Obama garnered 79% support in the poll.

And given Romney’s controversial trip to Europe, which Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson dubbed gaffepalooza, it is not shocking that Europeans overwhelmingly threw their support behind the incumbent.

Another poll, released by market-research agency YouGov, also found that Obama had an overwhelming advantage if Europeans were able to vote in the U.S. election.

Joe Twyman, YouGov’s director of political and social research, said that while Americans may not care about how the rest of the world would vote, popularity abroad plays into every presidency.

“Obviously, both candidates’ top priority is to win over the American public, but every modern President must also show that they can be an effective operator in the international arena,” he said.

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