Majority of Americans believe FBI needs reform, 24% say it shouldbe ‘shut down’: poll

Jun 6, 2023 | Featured, Political News

A new poll has found that Americans are, by and large, not satisfied with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with more than half of respondents saying they'd like to see the government agency reformed or shut down completely and rebuilt from the ground up. 

The poll, conducted by Issues & Insights and TechnoMetrica Institute of Policy and Politics between May 31 and June 2, came in the wake of a report by Special Counsel John Durham that revealed the increasing “politicization” of the Justice Department.

According to the poll, 39 percent of respondents say they wanted the FBI to be “reformed by Congress to keep it from meddling in future elections,” while 24 percent say it should be “shut down and rebuilt from scratch” because “it can't be trusted to do its job.”

A further 22 percent said they were “not sure,” and only 15 percent said the agency should be “left alone” because it's “learned its lesson.”

Republicans were more likely to opt for a complete shutdown compared to their Democrat counterparts, at 37 and 14 percent, respectively. Conversely, 45 percent of Democrats said they wanted to only see reform, versus 39 percent of Republicans.

In his report, Durham alleged that the FBI had relied on “raw, unanalyzed, and uncorroborated intelligence” during its investigation into supposed collusion between Trump and Russia in the leadup to the 2016 election. He slammed the agency, suggesting it had “badly underperformed and failed, not only in its duties to the public, but also in preventing the severe reputational harm.”

The increasing distrust in the FBI has been highlighted by numerous GOP politicians, including Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio.

“Public trust in the FBI is low,” Jordan wrote. “It is clear that Congress must consider legislative reforms to the FBI … in the interim, however, due to the FBI’s documented political bias, the Justice Department must ensure any ongoing investigations are not poisoned by this same politicization.”

He claimed, however, that the “so-called ‘corrective measures'” the department instituted in the wake of the Durham Report “have done nothing to address, let alone cure, the institutional rot that pervades the FBI.”