Opinion of federal government hits record low: poll

WASHINGTON Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:54pm EDT

A general view of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington February 28, 2013. REUTERS/Jason Reed

A general view of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington February 28, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Jason Reed

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Americans' opinion of the federal government has fallen to a record low even as they continue to view local and state governments favorably, according to Pew Research Center survey released on Monday.

Just 28 percent of Americans rate the government in Washington favorably, the lowest percentage ever in a Pew survey and down 5 percentage points from a year ago, Pew said in a statement.

The favorability rating has fallen steadily from a high of 82 percent in November 2001, after the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

The March survey showed Democrats with a more favorable opinion than Republicans of the federal government, at 41 percent to 13 percent.

Democrats' opinion has fallen 20 percentage points since July 2009, six months after President Barack Obama took office. The Republicans' favorable opinion is down 11 percentage points.

The poll shows that 63 percent of Americans have a favorable opinion of their local government, virtually unchanged since 2007. Fifty-seven percent have a favorable view of their state governments, up 5 percentage points from 2012.

Fully 71 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents who live in Republican-led states - those with a Republican governor and state legislature - have a favorable opinion of their state government.

But only 30 percent of Republicans living in Democratic-led states view their state governments favorably.

Democrats and Democratic leaners in Democratic-led states have a 64 percent positive view of their state governments. Among Democrats living in Republican-led states, 50 percent have a favorable opinion and 46 percent have an unfavorable opinion of their state government.

The survey was conducted March 13-17 among 1,501 adults. The margin of error is 2.9 percentage points.

(Reporting by Ian Simpson; Editing by Greg McCune and Tim Dobbyn)

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Comments (35)
TheNewWorld wrote:
Most Americans agree, the Federal government does a poor job. So why do Democrats want to grow the grow the government that they don’t like. We don’t like, we need more of it? Sounds genius. And the Republicans aren’t any better, they say don’t want to grow the government, and then grow faster than any Democrat could have ever hoped too (see GW Bush).

Apr 15, 2013 1:07pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Crash866 wrote:
Yet you voted for more and larger government…tick tock…

Apr 15, 2013 1:24pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
brotherkenny4 wrote:
We know they are bad because they are us. I actually have very little nice to say about the morons in my local and state governments. But then, I don’t need corruption to succeed as most Americans do. We are the cheat, lie, and steal country and only those that get caught are stupid.

Apr 15, 2013 1:32pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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