Military officers, judges and news reporters were among the professions that saw their public images fall to record lows among Americans in a new Gallup poll released on Wednesday.

Sixty-one percent of Americans rated the honesty and ethical standards of military officers as “high” or “very high,” compared to 71 percent in 2017. 

Thirty-eight percent of people in the poll rated the honesty and ethical standards of judges as “high” or “very high,” compared to 43 percent in 2020, and 14 percent said the same about TV reporters, down from 23 percent in 2017.


Other professions that suffered record low ratings of their honesty and ethical standard were newspaper reporters (17 percent) and clergy (36 percent).

Gallup noted TV reporters and military officers suffered poorer public images due to lower ratings from Republican-leaning independents and Republicans. When it came to TV reporters, 6 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning people said the profession had “very high” or “high” honesty and ethical standards compared to 24 percent of Democrats and Democratic leaners.

Four years ago, both parties had a better image of TV reporters, though still less so among Republicans. In 2017, 35 percent of Democrats said the profession had “very high” or “high” honesty and ethical standards, while 10 percent of Republicans said the same.

The global analytics firm also said Republicans’ image of military officers, at 67 percent, is at the lowest since its first reading in 2002.

Gallup noted, however, that Republicans regard military officers higher than Democratic leaners and Democrats, who recorded 59 percent.

The professions that enjoyed the highest public image ratings included nurses (81 percent), medical doctors (67 percent), grade-school teachers (64 percent) and pharmacists (63 percent).

The Gallup poll was conducted from Dec. 1 to Dec. 16 through telephone interviews that surveyed 811 adults. The margin of sampling error is plus or minus 4 percentage points with a 95 percent confidence level.