WASHINGTON (AP) -- A new poll finds Americans starting the new year with a profoundly negative view of their government. They express little hope that elected officials can or will solve the nation's biggest problems.
Half say America's system of democracy needs either "a lot of changes" or a complete overhaul. Just one in 20 says it works well and needs no changes.
The poll was conducted by the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.
The percentage of Americans saying the nation is heading in the right direction hasn't topped 50 in about a decade. In the new poll, 70 percent lack confidence in the government's ability to make progress on the important problems and issues facing the country.
People feel somewhat better about their personal lives and chances for economic improvement.