15 Mar How to Protect Foreign Aid? Improve It
Tina Rosenberg, The New York Times Opinionator Blog
A Bloomberg National Poll says that more than 7 in 10 Americans think that Congress can find major savings in the federal budget by slashing foreign aid. It’s a new poll, but this is old news.
Americans want to help others, but they’re skeptical that foreign aid can do much good.
Americans have always vastly overestimated how much we spend on foreign aid. A 2010 survey asked Americans what percentage of the federal budget went to foreign aid. The median response was 25 percent. When asked what percentage would be appropriate, the answer was 10 percent. Polls going back at least a decade show similar responses. In fact, foreign aid accounts for less than 1 percent of the federal budget.