According to a Gallup poll published on Dec. 9, members of Congress are among the least trusted professionals in the U.S., while health care workers are listed as the most trusted. The results have an ironic ring to them as lawmakers prepare to overhaul the health care system.
According to analyst Lydia Saad, for the first time in its history, Gallup's annual Honesty and Ethics of Professions poll, found that 55 percent of Americans rate the honesty and ethical standards of Members of Congress as “low” or “very low.” Saad pointed out that the low ranking is distributed among all politicians, regardless of party affiliation.
“Congress has long ranked among the worst-rated professions on Gallup's annual Honesty and Ethics of Profession Pole,” said Saad in her analysis. However, the latest results show that politicians have “earned the unwelcome distinction of having a majority of Americans rate its integrity as low or very low,” she noted.
The results are based on telephone interviews with 1,017 national adults, aged 18 and up, and were conducted in November of this year. Participants were asked to rate the ethical standards of a list of professions as “very high” all the way down to “very low” or “no opinion.”
In contrast to politicians, health care workers were listed as the most trusted profession in the U.S. with nurses being given a “high” or “very high” rating by 83 percent of those interviewed.
Clergy members were also given a relatively high ranking as a trusted profession. Among the 22 professions listed by the Gallop poll that were given high rankings by participants, clergy were listed as number eight with 50 percent rating the profession “high” or “very high.”
Gallup analysts were not immediately available for further comment.