Poll: Russians don't believe officials

Most Russians do not believe that senior officials tell the truth, including to the president, about the state of affairs in the economy, healthcare, the fight against crime and other major management areas, the Levada Center told Interfax, quoting an opinion poll.

Most Russians do not believe that senior officials tell the truth, including to the president, about the state of affairs in the economy, healthcare, the fight against crime and other major management areas, the Levada Center told Interfax, quoting an opinion poll.

Forty-one percent of the respondents are sure that officials always or practically always conceal the truth, and a third (34 percent) argues that officials can be honest sometimes and tell lies in other cases. Some 1,600 respondents were polled in 134 populated localities on July 17-20.

Seventeen percent are positive that the Russian authorities always or practically always tell the truth.

Russians have a little more faith in official statistical data than in the information presented by officials: 23 percent believe that statistical data is credible, 32 percent do not and 41 percent have mixed feelings.

A relative majority (42 percent) of the respondents claim that even the Russian president does not receive complete information or that this information is distorted, and 14 percent think that the entire truth is concealed from the president. Thirty-one percent think that the circle of President Vladimir Putin provides him with a full and credible picture, and 13 percent are undecided.

Also, 38 percent of the respondents claimed that they can freely express their attitude to the policies of the national administration anywhere. A third (33 percent) thinks they can comment on the authorities out loud but not everywhere and to a limit. A tenth deems it impossible to openly comment on the actions of the authorities, and 17 percent utter that they have no need to comment on the policies of the national administration.

A half of the respondents (48 percent) think that their compatriots always or in most cases frankly express their attitude to the authorities. Thirty-one percent believe that the number of people who openly express their opinion or conceal their standpoint is 50/50. Seventeen percent said that Russians mostly kept their opinion on the authorities to themselves.

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