By John Dodge

CHICAGO (CBS) — By an astonishingly wide margin, Illinois residents trust their government officials to handle their problems far less than any other state.

With the parade of governors, lawmakers and public officials sent to prison for corruption, coupled with the state’s massive pension debt crisis and crippling financial status, it may come as no surprise that only 28 percent of Illinoisans have any sort of faith in their public leaders to solve problems.

Gov. Pat Quinn’s 66 percent income tax hike played a huge role

Only 4 percent said they had a “great deal” of trust.

The research was conducted by Gallup.

“The Illinois economy remains shaky and the state government continues to struggle to balance the budget,” Gallup said.

However, the gap between Illinois and the next-worst states is a whopping 12 percentage points.

In Rhode Island and Maine, about 40 percent of residents say they either have a “great deal” or “fair amount” of trust in state government. Only seven states had a trust factor below 50 percent.

Indiana and Iowa were far more trusting, with about two-thirds of those polled saying they had faith in their public officials.

North Dakota ranked No. 1 in the nation, with 77 percent saying that they trusted government, followed by Wyoming, Utah and South Dakota.

Illinois’ number was 30 points below the national average.

Gallup polled at least 600 residents in each state between June and December of last year.

The poll has a margin of error of +/- 5 percent.

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