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Fox News Poll: Most voters say the government is broken

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Oct.1 , 2013: The U.S. Capitol dome is seen on Capitol Hill. (Reuters)

A record number of Americans think the federal government is “broken.”   

Seventy-one percent of voters say so, while 21 percent say the government is working “just okay.”  Hardly any -- six percent -- think it’s working “pretty well,” according to a Fox News national poll released Thursday.

In addition, the new poll shows that the belief that Washington is broken is growing.  It’s up six percentage points since last year and up 13 points since 2010.

The “broken” sentiment is widespread:  majorities of both men (73 percent) and women (70 percent) feel that way, as do urban (65 percent) and rural voters (73 percent), and voters across all age groups.  

Most Republicans (81 percent) and independents (78 percent) say Washington needs an “Out of Order” sign.

The number of Democrats who say Washington is busted is up 12 points:  59 percent feel that way now.  It was 47 percent last year.  Another 29 percent of Democrats think the government is working okay and nine percent think it’s working well.  

Along with Democrats, voters under age 30 and black voters are among the least likely to say government is broken and among the most likely to say it is working okay.  

Even so, the portion of young voters who say the government is broken is up 14 points since last year.  

Nearly a third of young voters think that Washington is working okay (31 percent).  That’s about twice the number of seniors who hold this opinion:  17 percent of those ages 65 and over say government is working okay, while 71 percent think it’s broken.

The Fox News poll is based on landline and cell phone interviews with 1,027 randomly chosen registered voters nationwide and was conducted under the joint direction of Anderson Robbins Research (D) and Shaw & Company Research (R) from December 14-16, 2013.  The full poll has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.