42 Percent Of Voters Want Brian Williams Back In The 'NBC Nightly News' Anchor Chair

03/09/2015 12:36 pm ET | Updated Mar 10, 2015

Brian Williams may be down, but he's not out.

While the embattled "NBC Nightly News" anchor serves a six-month suspension for fabricating his reporting experience during the Iraq War in 2003, a new Quinnipiac University National poll released Monday asked if Williams should eventually be allowed to return to his position.

"Brian Williams should be allowed to come back as NBC Nightly News anchor, voters say 42-35 percent," the results read.

While things seems to be looking up for Williams, especially with the hiring of ally Andrew Lack as chairman of NBC News last week, the jury still seems to be out on Bill O'Reilly.

The Fox News host has been plagued by his own allegations of lying in recent weeks, beginning with Mother Jones accusing him of embellishing his experiences while reporting on the Falklands War in 1982.

Despite the story dominating coverage inside media circles, 51 percent of voters haven't heard enough about the topic to form an opinion. Twenty-three percent of voters say O'Reilly should stay on at Fox News, while 12 percent say he should be fired and 11 percent say he should be suspended.

Still, with two of the biggest names in TV news being accused of misleading their viewers, voters seem to long for the days of Walter Cronkite, "the most trusted man in America," who helmed CBS News for nearly two decades through the 1960s and '70s.

Forty-eight percent of voters say that network news is less trustworthy today than it was during Cronkite's era.

"Bring back Uncle Walter, as Brian Williams and Bill O'Reilly get lukewarm support for their journalistic indiscretions," Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, said. "American news watchers long for an era where the person in the big chair could be truly trusted."

Fox News as a whole, however, is the most trusted news network on television, according to the poll. Twenty percent of voters say they trust the journalistic coverage of Fox News "a great deal," while its cable news competitors, CNN and the slumping MSNBC, recorded 18 and 11 percent, respectively. Fox beat out network news, too, with only 14 percent of voters trusting NBC News, ABC News and CBS News "a great deal."

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