Stephen Harper one of the least trusted leaders, according to new poll

According to a new survey, Prime Minister Stephen Harper is one of the least trusted leaders in the Americas.When it comes to our politicians, Canadians are a cynical bunch.

Whether its a case of collective jilted bride syndrome or whether it's because we've been lied to too many times, we just don't trust people in government.

A new Environics Institute survey — to be released later this week — actually quantified our political doubts and compared it to 25 other countries in the Americas.

According to the preliminary results of the study, published in the Globe and Mail, Canadians have comparatively low levels of trust for Parliament (17 per cent) and political parties (10 per cent).

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We also don't trust Prime Minister Stephen Harper very much:

"The survey found only 16 per cent of Canadians place 'a lot of trust' in their Prime Minister, putting Stephen Harper near the bottom among all leaders in the Americas.

'In an international context, Harper has a lower level of trust than almost every other national leader in the hemisphere,' Mr. [Keith] Neuman [of The Environics Institute] said."

The pollster suggests that Canadians' cynicism of politics is the result of the constant bickering we saw during the minority governments between 2004 and 2011.

But former Liberal MP Dan McTeague says the Harper government's post-minority antics are also to blame.

"Given the Conservative's penchant for vicious negative ads, in and out of campaign periods and high handed partisanship in the House and Senate, legitimized by angry right wing talk show formats — they have only themselves to blame,"  he told Yahoo! Canada News.

"Conservatives and their allies in the media feed on and exploit the negative. It's a zero sum strategy that in order to win you play and thrive on the public's cynicism, confident in the knowledge Canada's right wing media won't dare bite the hand that feeds them."

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Why do you think Canadians don't trust 'government'?

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