poll

The “trust and confidence” the American people have in the federal government’s handling of both domestic and international problems is now at a lower level than it was even during the height of the Watergate scandal in 1974, according to Gallup polling data released last week.

Since 1972, Gallup has periodically asked Americans: “How much trust and confidence do you have in our federal government in Washington when it comes to handling [international problems/domestic problems]–a great deal, a fair amount, not very much, or none at all?”

In April 1974, four months before President Richard Nixon was forced to resign as result of the Watergate scandal, 24 percent said they had a great deal of trust and confidence in the federal government’s handling of international problems and 49 percent said they had a fair amount of confidence—for a combined 73 percent who said they had a great deal or fair amount of trust and confidence in the federal government in this area.