Polling shocker: GOP voters despise government under Obama and love Ben Carson

New poll shows GOP voters 3x as furious at government

By Sophia Tesfaye

Senior Politics Editor

Published November 23, 2015 5:19PM (EST)

  (AP/Alan Diaz)
(AP/Alan Diaz)

Following the attacks of 9/11, 15 years ago, 60 percent of Americans said they trusted their government. Now, a week after a series of terror attacks in Paris, just 19 percent of Americans say they trust the government, led by Republicans who are enraged by the federal government under Barack Obama's presidency.

According to a new Pew poll of more than 6,000 Americans, Republicans are nearly three times as likely to say they are "angry" with government, at 32 percent of Republicans and GOP leaning voters compared with 12 percent of Democrats and Democratic leaners. Just 11 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents say they trust the government, compared with 26 percent of Democrats and Democratic leaners.

During the 2013 government shutdown the number of Republicans who indicated they were "angry" at the government crept up to 38 percent, the highest number for any party in decades.

But it's not just the angry GOP voters who take supreme umbrage with Obama's administration. Eighty-nine percent of all Republicans said they now never trust federal authorities, while 75 percent think the government is always wasteful and inefficient. Only 36 percent of Republicans say the government should play any role in helping lift Americans out of poverty.

During the Bush administration, Republican anger at the federal government peaked at 9 percent:

pew poll

And among the angry GOP voters, soft-spoken political newcomer Ben Carson is the man of the hour. 71 percent of GOP voters angry at government view Carson favorably, according to the survey. Just 15 percent of angry GOPers have a negative view of the retired neurosurgeon. Unlike many of the other candidates, Carson also draws support from 63 percent of those Republicans who said they were not angry.

The poll also shows that Donald Trump and Marco Rubio appear to draw their main well of support from the GOP's angry base. 66 percent of angry GOP voters saw Rubio favorably, while just 25 percent did not, and 64 percent saw Trump favorably and 32 percent did not.

Unsurprisingly, the only Republican candidate allowed on the main debate stage who does not do better among angry Republicans is Jeb!

pew poll2

Another takeaway from the poll is that despite party affiliation, it is clear that cynicism about money in politics has set in for the American electorate. A full 76 percent of all respondents said money “has a greater influence on politics and elected officials today than in the past." Another 64 percent agreed that the amount of money it takes to run for president "discourages many good candidates from running."

By Sophia Tesfaye

Sophia Tesfaye is Salon's senior editor for news and politics, and resides in Washington, D.C. You can find her on Twitter at @SophiaTesfaye.

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Anti-government Gop Obama Derangement Syndrome Poll President Obama