Monday, September 27, 2010

Trust in Congress Falls to Record Low in New Gallup Poll

There's a decline in trust of all the three branches of government, but especially in Congress. See, "Trust in Legislative Branch Falls to Record-Low 36%":


A record-low 36% of Americans have a great deal or fair amount of trust and confidence in the legislative branch of government, down sharply from the prior record low of 45% set last year. Trust in the judicial branch and trust in the executive branch also suffered sharp declines this year but remain higher than trust in the legislative branch.

Gallup has measured these trends each year since 2001 as part of its annual Governance survey, and prior to that on an occasional basis in the 1990s and the 1970s. While trust in the legislative branch has been steadily declining for years, trust in the other two branches of government -- the executive and the judicial -- had risen in 2009 compared with 2008. All in all, between last year and this, trust in the legislative branch fell 9 percentage points, trust in the executive branch fell 11 points, and in the judicial branch, 10 points.

Trust in the legislative branch was highest, at 71%, in May 1972, and remained generally high from that point to the mid-2000s. It then dropped to 50% in 2007, 47% in 2008, and 45% in 2009, all record lows at the time they were measured. This year's 36% legislative confidence rating marks still another record low, and is the lowest trust level in any of the three branches of government in Gallup's history.
RELATED: At Pat in Shreveport's, "Obama Under Water." The link there is to Politico, "Poll: Rocky road seen ahead for Obama." And also at Politico, not worth believing, from CELINDA LAKE, DANIEL GOTOFF, AND MATT PRICE, "Poll analysis: Competitive midterm landscape for Dems." (I say "not worth believing" because Celinda Lake is a Democratic political consultant and I doubt current polling is capturing the historic scale of voter discontent. That is, the tidal wave that's coming on November 2nd will be bigger than the most dire assessments for the party in power. This is historic. I can't wait.)

BONUS EXTRA: If you're not hip on the Ramirez cartoon, see Warner Todd Huston, "Mentally Retarded Now Have ‘Intellectual Disability’."