Just prior to the historic 2012 Egyptian presidential elections, Shibley Telhami, a Brookings Institution fellow, University of Maryland professor and pollster released the results of the 2012 Public Opinion Survey in Egypt. In it, Telhami assesses which candidate is most favored by respondents, the issues driving voter preferences, what role they want religion to play in politics and attitudes toward the United States.

A few key points of interest in the poll:

•Most of the votes are intended for two candidates: Abdel-Men’em Abul-Fotouh led with 32%, followed by Amr Mousa with 28%, followed by Ahmed Shafiq with 14%, and Mohamed Morsi and Hamdeen Sabahi with 8% each.

•The feeling of trust in the candidate is the most important quality respondents cited.

•The majority of respondents, 71%, said that the Muslim Brotherhood’s decision to field their own presidential candidates after they said that they would not was a mistake.

•Mohamed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate garnered only 8% support.

On attitudes, there are a few other items to note:

•In the 2012 U.S. presidential elections, 73% of respondents said they want Mitt Romney to be president and only 25% hope for President Obama’s re-election.

•When asked about how they feel toward the U.S., 68% said “very unfavorable,” 17% “unfavorable” and 14% “favorable.”