Dec 10, 2021 - Sports

Poll: Most Americans support some kind of boycott of Beijing Olympics

Data: Morning Consult; Chart: Jacque Schrag/Axios

Most Americans support some form of boycott against the Beijing Olympics, per a recent Morning Consult survey.

By the numbers: 55% of respondents said either a diplomatic (31%) or total boycott (24%) would be an appropriate response given the Chinese government's record of human rights violations. Just 12% opposed any form of boycott.

Driving the news: President Biden on Monday announced the U.S. will engage in a diplomatic boycott. The U.K., Australia, Canada and Lithuania have also announced they're not sending diplomatic delegations to the Winter Games.

  • In a diplomatic boycott, government officials don't travel to the Olympics, but athletes still compete under their flag.
  • In response, Chinese foreign minister Zhao Lijian promised "resolute countermweasures," saying, "The United States will pay a price for its mistaken acts."

The big picture: These are the seventh Olympics in which at least one nation will boycott, joining Melbourne 1956, Tokyo 1964, Montreal 1976, Moscow 1980, Los Angeles 1984 and Seoul 1988.

  • Then-President Obama, along with then-Vice President Biden and first lady Michelle Obama, didn't attend the Sochi Games in 2014 — likely as a rebuke to Russia's anti-gay laws — but it wasn't an official boycott.
  • U.S. athletes will awkwardly field questions about China during the Games, and as WSJ notes, "satisfy nobody, no matter how they answer."

Go deeper: These countries have announced diplomatic boycotts of the Beijing Olympics

Methodology: The poll was conducted Dec. 3-6, 2021, among 2,200 U.S. adults, with a margin of error of +/-2%, per Morning Consult.

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