A new poll found that 71.6 percent of Americans want Brian Williams to resign from NBC's Nightly News even after he apologized for misrepresenting his role in a 2003 helicopter crash in Iraq and was suspended. The poll, commissioned by conservative watchdog Media Research Center (MRC) and performed by McLaughlin & Associates, also indicates 66.1 percent of those surveyed believe NBC should have fired Brian Williams after his war story was shown to be untrue.
Additionally, 61.6 percent said their trust in NBC News would diminish if the network brings Brian Williams back to host Nightly News.
The poll shows the impact Brian Williams' misleading story of being in a helicopter shot down over Iraq on his reputation and the reputation of NBC News, MRC President Brent Bozell said.
"This poll confirms that the American people no longer trust Brian Williams to report the news," Bozell said in a press release. "When the American people believe by such wide margins that your lead anchor is a liar, you have no other option but to fire him if he will not do the honorable thing and resign."
"Any effort by NBC News to rehabilitate its tarnished brand can only begin under new leadership for its flagship nightly news program. This is no longer about Brian Williams’ reputation. This is about NBC News having any chance of being a credible source of news."
The poll surveyed 1,007 people between Feb. 13 and Feb. 17. 32.1 percent of respondents identified as Republican, 38 percent identified as Democrat, and 29.9 percent identified as independents or other. The margin of error was 3.1 percent.