Special to Nikkei

Asia is once again on the minds of the leading U.S. presidential candidates and the American public. Americans’ negative views of China are as strong as they have ever been. Republican presidential aspirant Donald Trump, who leads the national polls for the GOP nomination, has called for a 45% tariff on imports from China. Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton says she no longer supports the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), despite backing it in the past while serving as U.S. Secretary of State. And Americans are deeply divided along partisan lines about a range of Asia-related issues: support for TPP, backing for the Obama Administration’s “pivot to Asia” and in their willingness to go to the defense of America’s Asian allies if they are attacked by China.

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