Americans’ trust in government has plummeted to an all-time low, said a new poll released Friday.
A CNN poll showed that just 13 percent of Americans say the government can be trusted to do what is right always or most of the time.
A little more than say the government can be trusted “some of the time,” and about 10 percent say they “never” trust the government, according to the poll.
“The number who trust the government all or most of the time has sunk so low that it is hard to remember that there was ever a time when Americans routinely trusted the government,” CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said.
He noted that polling by the University of Michigan consistently found a majority of Americans in the 1960s and 1970s said the government could be trusted all or most of the time. However, the trend ended with the Watergate scandal that forced President Nixon to resign on Aug. 4, 1974.
“In 1972, 53 percent said they trusted the government always or most of the time. By 1974, that figure had plummeted to 36 percent, and except for a brief period of patriotic sentiment immediately after the 9/11 attacks, it has remained under 50 percent ever since,” Mr. Holland said.
The widespread mistrust was not confined to the White House and Congress.
Just 17 percent of Americans said big business can be trusted to do what is right always or most of the time.
About 73 percent said they trust big business “only some of the time,” and 9 percent said they “never” trust big business, the poll said.