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Poll: Trust in Supreme Court, Congress at Historic Low

June 30, 2014

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The public's trust in Congress and the Supreme Court has dropped to historic lows. (file photo)
The public's trust in Congress and the Supreme Court has dropped to historic lows. (file photo)

Public confidence in the Supreme Court and Congress hit historic lows in June, while confidence in the presidency is at its lowest in six years, the Gallup poll reports.

Confidence in the presidency dropped 7 percentage points in a year to 29 percent, while faith in the Supreme Court dipped 4 points to 30 percent. The drop was only 3 percent for Congress -- historically the least-loved branch of government -- to 7 percent.

The level of trust in Congress and the high court is the lowest since Gallup began polling on the issue. In the final two years of George W. Bush's presidency, confidence dropped to historic lows of 25 percent in 2007 and 26 percent in 2008.

While Gallup does not name the current president when it asks about confidence in the presidency, public opinion of the officeholder clearly influences responses and spills over into how respondents feel about the other two branches of government.

When Gallup first posed the question in 1991, 72 percent of respondents said they had confidence in the presidency. At the time, President George H.W. Bush had high approval ratings following the speedy victory over Iraq in the Gulf War, which quickly eroded when the economy turned sour.

Confidence in the Supreme Court and Congress dropped in the last years of George W. Bush's presidency. They bounced back after Barack Obama was elected in 2008.

Gallup interviewed 1,027 adults by telephone between June 5 and June 8.

The margin of error is 4 percentage points.

Original headline: Gallup: Public trust in Supreme Court and Congress at historic lows

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