Poll: Distrust in media hits new high

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(CBS News) U.S. distrust of the mass media is at an all-time high, according to a new poll from Gallup, which indicates that six in ten Americans have little or no trust in mass media to report the news fully, accurately, and fairly.

The survey, conducted from Sept. 6-9, shows that faith in the media is down in recent years, with 40 percent of Americans saying they have a great deal of or some faith in the media to comprehensively and fairly report the news, and 60 percent expressing the opposite perspective.

According to Gallup, the public has become increasingly negative about the media in election years over time.

So even while they're paying more attention to political news this year than they otherwise might, Americans are less likely percent to be paying very close attention to that news than in previous election years. Currently, 39 percent of Americans say they are very closely following political news, down 4 points from September 2008.

Republicans are the least likely to trust the mass media, with only 26 percent expressing any degree of faith that it is fairly reporting the news. Thirty-one percent of independents expressed similar trust, as did 58 percent of Democrats.

Even so, at 48 percent, Republicans are more likely than independents (33 percent) and Democrats (39 percent) to be following the national political news "very closely."

According to Gallup, the decline in interest about national political news may reflect both the general trend and "the level of interest in the presidential election specifically," as it was conducted immediately following both presidential elections.

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