Only 34 percent of Americans believe the United Nations should be in charge of international relief efforts for victims of the South Asia tsunami that killed more than 150,000 people Dec. 26, according to a survey.



U.N. deputy Jan Egeland called U.S. ‘stingy.’

The Rasmussen Reports poll of 1,000 adults also found 83 percent believe the United States is generous when confronted with the emergency needs of other nations.

Just 12 percent believe the U.S. is stingy, a question apparently prompted by U.N. Under-Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland’s negative assessment of the U.S. and other Western nations in the immediate aftermath of the tsunami.

Support for the United Nations contrasted widely between Republicans and Democrats, according to the survey, conducted Jan. 8-9.

Among Republicans, 69 percent believe nations should help those in need directly rather than work through the United Nations while 44 percent of Democrats agree and 36 percent disagree.

Rasmussen found 38 percent of American adults have contributed money to relief organizations aiding victims of the disaster in Asia.

The survey indicated the proportion was the same across the political spectrum, with 38 percent of Republicans, 38 percent of Democrats and 38 percent of unaffiliated voters having made contributions.

Seventy-two percent of Americans have prayed for the victims and their families, Rasmussen discovered. This includes 83 percent of women and 60 percent of men. Unaffiliated voters are less likely to have prayed than either Republicans or Democrats.

Those who earn more than $75,000 a year are most likely to have contributed money. Those who earn less than $60,000 are most likely to have prayed, the survey found.

Rasmussen said 82 percent of Americans are following the news story somewhat or very closely. Those over 65 are paying closer attention than younger Americans.


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