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Trust In Fellow Americans Hits All-Time Low, Survey Shows

By News Creatives Authors , in Business , at October 7, 2021

Topline

Only 55% of U.S. adults say they have a great deal or even a fair amount of confidence in their fellow Americans when it comes to making judgments under the democratic system about issues facing the country, according to a new Gallup poll released Thursday, which found Americans’ trust in elected officials continues to plummet as well.

Key Facts

Gallup’s polling data on the confidence level U.S. adults have in the American public as a whole dates back to 1974, and 55% represents the lowest percentage on record, slightly below the number posted in 2016. 

Confidence in the judgments of the American people reached a peak of 86% in 1976 and remained above 70% until 2009, but has continued to decline since then. 

Thursday’s poll also revealed less than half of U.S. adults (44%) say they trust politicians who hold or are running for public office, nearing the record low of 42% from 2016.

Gallup’s annual Governance poll was conducted September 1-17 among 1,005 adults.

Key Background:

While trust in the American people ranges between 51% and 59% for all party identification groups, confidence in lawmakers varies widely based on the respondents’ political party. In Thursday’s poll, 64% of Democrats said they trust running and elected officials, while just 34% of Independents and 39% of Republicans expressed a similar level of confidence. The 25-point difference between Democrats and Republicans represents one of the largest gaps on record, according to Gallup. As recently as 2015, there was only a one-point difference between GOP respondents and Democrats. 

Tangent:

Amid a myriad of issues, including a prolonged pandemic and a bungled withdrawal from Afghanistan, approval of President Joe Biden’s job performance has dropped to the lowest level in his presidency over the past few weeks. In an Ipsos poll released in mid-September, just 44% of Americans approved of Biden’s performance as president. In Quinnipiac’s latest national poll, released Wednesday, only 38% of respondents approved of Biden’s performance while 53% disapproved. 

Big Number:

60%: That’s the percentage of Independents that disapprove of Biden’s performance, according to the latest Quinnipiac poll.  

Further Reading:

In U.S., Trust in Politicians, Voters Continues to Ebb (Gallup) 

Biden’s Approval Rating Sinks To Lowest Level Of Presidency Amid Concerns Over Coronavirus Pandemic (Forbes)

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