Government approval rating hits low, according to poll

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Government approval rating hits low, according to poll

Post by Shirley on Mon Aug 29, 2011 9:09 am

Government approval rating hits low, according to poll

By TIM MAK | 8/29/11 6:02 AM EDT

American opinion of the federal government has sunk to an all-time low, with impressions of the public sector being ranked dead last among 25 business and industry sectors for the first time, according to a new poll.

Only 17 percent of Americans had a positive impression of the federal government, compared to 63 percent who viewed the federal government negatively, a Gallup poll released Monday founded. This led to an overall -46 percent net rating for the feds, a new low since Gallup began measuring the government’s image in 2003.

The Gallup poll shows a 14 percent drop in the net approval/disapproval since last year.

The federal government has been near the bottom of this list in recent years, but this is the first time that it has been at the absolute bottom of the 25 industries Gallup measured. In fact, of any industry, the federal government’s image is the one that has dropped the most precipitously over the last decade. In 2001, 41 percent viewed the federal government positively – meaning a 24 percent drop over the last ten years.

The drop began in 2004 amid concerns of President George W. Bush’s handling of the Iraq war. Although there was a slight uptick after President Barack Obama’s inauguration, the slide continued shortly after.

Indeed, this year the federal government ranked behind even the oil and gas industry and the real estate industry. Americans also viewed the federal government poorly compared to lawyers, bankers and the health care industry.

The top five ranked industries all were related to either computers or food, and included the farming, restaurant and internet sectors. The computer industry ranked the best of all twenty-five sectors, the same as last year, with a net positive rating of +62 percent.

This survey, which is conducted annually, was taken from Aug. 11 to Aug. 14 with a random sample of 1,008 adults. The margin of error is +/- 5 percentage points.

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