The countdown to the U.S. election continues, to say that it has everyone living abroad interested in the outcome is an understatement.
I interviewed my friend Claire, a psychology student who studied abroad at the University of the Sunshine Coast during the Fall of 2019. We explored her take on the American political climate in the land down under.
How was it integrating yourself into the Australian culture?
It wasn’t difficult in terms of making friends. But I did find that at times, Australians do have a sort of tendency to not like Americans. They have a preconceived notion of us. Often, the thought is that we are not educated, but we’re wealthy and pretentious.
What is the political climate like in Australia?
I got that Australians are generally far more bipartisan as a country. Even though there are differences of opinions, there seems to be a sense of respect among citizens. It is more unified than the political climate in the United States. Also, Australians are extremely socially conscious, especially on issues such as the environment. This past summer, when the Black Lives Matter movement began to dominate international media coverage, I received a lot of questions and concerns from my Australian friends too.
Do Australians have an opinion on the U.S. election? What seems to be the general consensus if there is one?
The time that I spent there, we discussed both American and Australian politics. Everyone I met seemed to be relatively politically involved but I did notice that Australians do talk more about American politics. They have a lot of interest in it and many of them do not have respect for President Donald Trump. That aside, Australians love to ask Americans about Trump and share their opinions regarding him as the commander-in-chief of the United States.