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A record 33% in annual Gallup poll have no confidence in mass media

Confidence in mass media overall remains mired at low levels, as the gap between Republican and Democrat trust reaches an all-time high.

Updated: January 5, 2021 - 12:02am

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

American trust in the media remains mired at low levels, with those professing no confidence at all reaching a record high, according to an annual Gallup poll.

The partisan gap in trust is at its widest ever, Gallup also found in the poll, which was released in September.

A combined 60% of respondents said they had "not very much" confidence in mass media or "none all," compared to just 40% who said they had a "great deal" or a "fair amount."

One-third (33%) of those polled said they had no confidence at all in mass media, a record high.

Just 10% of Republicans polled said they have a "great deal" or "fair amount" of trust in mass media, while a combined 73% of Democrats fell into those respective categories. For Republicans, that figure has declined steadily since the Bush and Obama presidencies, during which Republicans, on average, polled 30 to 35% trust in the media. 

The 63-point divide now between the two parties represents the largest gap Gallup has ever recorded since it began asking the question in the late 1970s. 

Over the past four years, Democratic trust in the media has risen to a near record high, while Republicans' has fallen to a historic low, though overall just 9% of those surveyed said they have a "great deal" of trust in the media.