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6% Of American Voters Think Congress Is Doing A Good Job

And no, that’s not a typo:

Voter approval of the job Congress is doing has fallen to a new low – for the second month in a row.

Just six percent (6%) of Likely U.S. Voters now rate Congress’ performance as good or excellent, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey. Last month, Congressional approval ratings fell to what was then a record low with eight percent (8%) who rated its performance good or excellent.

Sixty-one percent (61%) now think the national legislators are doing a poor job, a jump of nine points from a month ago.

(…)

Only 11% of voters believe this Congress has passed any legislation that will significantly improve life in America. That ties the lowest ever finding in nearly five years of surveys, last reached in January 2009. Sixty-nine percent (69%) think Congress has not passed any legislation of this caliber, a six-point increase from June and the most negative assessment ever. Nineteen percent (19%) are not sure.

(…)

With divided control of Congress, neither party’s voters are very happy. Eight percent (8%) of GOP voters give Congress positive marks, compared to five percent (5%) of Democrats and six percent (6%) of voters not affiliated with either of the major parties.

Low approval numbers for Congress aren’t uncommon, of course, but these may be among the lowest I’ve ever seen and reflect a level of cynicism and frustration with the political process that could have profound implications for elections in 2012 and beyond. Put simply, when people start thinking this lowly of their representatives the odds that they are going to participate in the process would seem to diminish since an a “What’s the point?” attitude starts to take over at some point.

 

 

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. hey norm says:

    And that’s from Rasmussen – the Fox News of polling!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  2. CB says:

    which naturally begs the question…what is that 6% of american voters smoking?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  3. ALB says:

    In these polls there is often a difference between what voters think of Congress more generally and what they think of their representatives more particularly. Voters tend to think of Congress poorly (which this poll definitely indicates) but also tend to believe that their representatives are doing a good job. So considering I think the conclusion you make (“Put simply, when people start thinking this lowly of their representatives the odds that they are going to participate in the process would seem to diminish since an a “What’s the point?” attitude starts to take over at some point.”) might be a little bit off base because people will still turn out to vote their incumbents back in even if they feel the Congress as a whole is doing a poor job.

    Alternatively, viewing Congress so poorly can cause turnout to increase, in a vote the bums out sort of way. I think the tea party is a good example of this (whether you agree with them or not). They were very dissatisfied with the Congress generally and many of their representatives particularly and turned out to create a great amount of turnover in the 2010 midterm elections.

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  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    which naturally begs the question…what is that 6% of american voters smoking?

    and how did they get them to give a coherent response? Hold on, hold on, it’s a Rasmussen poll. That answers a lot.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  5. legion says:

    I suspect there’s a strong correlation between the 6% that thinks Congress is Right On and the top 6% or so of wealth in this country…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  6. Ben Wolf says:

    At what point do we acknowledge our democracy is now in a full blown legitimacy crisis? All that’s left to happen is the violence.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0