People REALLY hate politicians

As rough a P.R. problem Wall Street financial institutions face, this election season features a new whipping post this election season: politicians.

Americans express more unfavorable views of “politicians” than just about any of the people, policies or institutions asked about in a year of Washington Post-ABC News favorability polls.

Fully 71 percent of all Americans -- and eight in 10 political independents -- have negative views of politicians, including Democrats, Republicans and any other stripe. Only the direction of the economy came in for more negative reviews -- with a 74 percent negative assessment of the direction of the U.S. economy late last year. Congress and Wall Street financial institutions were close behind.

Looked at from the other direction, just 26 percent of Americans have favorable views of politicians. A touch even less popular in this poll -- at 21 percent favorable -- are the political pundits who cover them. Some 59 percent say they have unfavorable views of the political commentators, with 20 percent expressing no opinion.

There’s remarkable consistency across party lines in an aversion to both pundits and politicians.

Americans render a more evenly divided verdict on the political polls that are so ubiquitous this time of year. Among those who responded to the poll (!), 46 percent hold favorable views of polls in general, and 47 percent have negative ones.

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