A majority of voters thinks the Hutton report on events leading to the death of Dr David Kelly is a "whitewash", a YouGov poll for The Telegraph says today.
The public expressed doubts about the report's one-sided verdict, which savaged the BBC while exonerating the Government, as Tony Blair claimed a second scalp with the resignation of Greg Dyke, the BBC's director-general. He also secured an "unreserved" apology from the corporation's governors.
The survey found that 56 per cent of people interviewed said Lord Hutton, as a member of the Establishment, was too ready to sympathise with the Government.
Only 34 per cent thought his report represented a thorough and impartial attempt to discover the truth about Dr Kelly's death.
After the BBC suffered the most traumatic 24 hours in its history, the poll shows that the corporation is still trusted more than the Government.
YouGov found that 67 per cent trust BBC news journalists to tell the truth, compared with 31 per cent who trust the Government.
The finding is a blow to the Prime Minister, who had hoped that the report would enable him to rebuild trust, badly damaged by the controversy over the Iraq conflict.
He called a halt to his eight-month war with the BBC after what amounted to an unconditional surrender by the corporation's board.
Sir Christopher Bland, a former BBC chairman, said Lord Hutton had whitewashed the Government and "tarred and feathered the BBC".
Lord Rees-Mogg, a former vice-chairman of the BBC board, said the report was a "bad bit of work". Clare Short, who resigned from the Cabinet over the war, described it as "completely one-sided".
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