Poll: Public Sours On Government and Business

Source Organization: Pew Research Center

10/25/2005 - Americans express increasingly negative views of a wide range major institutions, reflecting strong discontent with national conditions. Over the past year, ratings have tumbled for the federal government and Congress. And it is not just Washington institutions that are being viewed less positively. Favorable opinions of business corporations are at their lowest point in two decades. In the face of high energy prices, just 20% express positive opinions of oil companies.

Favorable ratings for the federal government in Washington have taken the hardest hit, falling from 59% last year to 45% currently. The latest national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, conducted among 2,006 Americans from Oct. 12-24, 2005, finds that even positive views of the military, while very high, have slipped slightly (from 87% in March to 82%). Just two institutions are unscathed by public discontent. Ratings for the Supreme Court and the news media were unchanged compared to previous surveys.

President Bush’s job approval rating is at 40%, just above its all-time low of 38% earlier this month, but favorable opinions of the president stand at their lowest point since he took office in 2001 (46%). Ratings for the Republican Party also have eroded in the past few months; more Americans now have a positive view of the Democratic Party than the Republican Party (49% vs. 42%).

Read the complete poll results Public Sours On Government and Business on the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press Web site.

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