Congress’ Approval Even Lower Than Bush’s
As bad as President Bush’s approval ratings are, it could be worse: He could be Congress.
A new Gallup Poll finds continued low levels of public support for both Congress and President George W. Bush. Twenty-nine percent of Americans approve of Congress, down slightly from last month’s reading (33%) and this year’s high point of 37%, while Bush’s approval rating is holding steady at 33%. Both the ratings of Congress and the president are slightly lower than their respective 2007 averages.
Congress is seldom popular as an institution, of course, despite the fact that people re-elect their individual Members at an overwhelming rate. Still, one would think a change in party control in both Houses, especially since the new leadership is opposing an incredibly unpopular president and very unpopular war, would provide a little juice. Yet, four months into the new Congress, they’re only three points higher than the old Congress was the day they got trounced at the polls.
What’s even more telling is that “only 37% of Democrats approve of the job Congress is doing right now.” How much that’s a sign of frustration that Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Majority Leader Harry Reid have not been sufficiently radical or disappointment that their enthusiasm for fiscal responsibility ended about five minutes after taking control is unknown.