The U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais, AP)
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The U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais, AP)
We know Americans don’t have much confidence in Congress or President Obama,  but it turns out the Supreme Court is also slipping in the public eye.
On the same day the justices ruled on a controversial case dealing with  Obama’s contraception policy, a new Gallup Poll finds only 30% of Americans have confidence in the Supreme Court — a record low for the judicial branch. The findings also represent a 7-point drop for the Supreme Court since 2012.
The court ruled 5-4 on Monday that closely held companies cannot be forced to offerinsurance coverage for contraception methods that they equate with abortion. The court’s decision in what’s known as the Hobby Lobby case is a blow to Obama’s Affordable Care Act, which included the so-called contraception mandate.
In the Gallup Poll, confidence in Congress reached a record-low 7% while faith in Obama hit 29% — a six-year low for the presidency.
Justin McCarthy writes for Gallup that faith in the presidency and the high court are usually closely rated — with the executive and judicial branches coming within six or seven points of each other in polling since 1991.
But confidence in the Supreme Court has slipped steadily since its heydey during the Reagan administration, when 56% of Americans said they believed in the high court in 1985 and 1988. The ratings for the court mostly stayed in the 40s and 50s but took a sharp turn down to 34% in 2007 — a year after George W. Bush won Senate confirmation for Samuel Alito to the court.