January 25th, 2010
01:00 PM ET
5 years ago

CNN Poll: Most Americans applaud Democrats' loss of supermajority

Washington (CNN) - Americans are divided on whether Democratic control of Congress is good for the country, according to a new national poll.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday also indicates that 7 in 10 Americans believe that the Democrats' loss of their 60 seat supermajority in the Senate is a positive move for the country.

Forty-five percent of people questioned in the poll said Democratic control of Congress is a good thing, with 48 percent disagreeing. The margin is within the survey's sampling error. But the results are a shift from last June, when 50 percent felt that Democratic control of both chambers of Congress was good and 41 percent felt it was bad for the country.

Full results (pdf)

Democrats control the House 256 to 178, with one seat vacant. Last week's victory by Republican Scott Brown in a Massachusetts special Senate election to fill the final three years of the late Sen. Ted Kennedy's term means that Brown will become the 41st Republican in the chamber, leaving Democrats with 59 senate seats. That's one short of the filibuster-proof supermajority they have held since last spring, when Republican Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania switched parties.

"The poll provides more evidence of the dwindling appeal of the Democratic party in the wake of last week's special election in Massachusetts," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Fewer Americans have a favorable view of the Democrats, and fewer support Democratic control on Capitol Hill."

Brown, a state Senator, became the first Massachusetts Republican to win a U.S. Senate election since 1972, but the survey indicates that most Americans don't see his victory as a huge blow for the Democratic party. Thirty-eight percent of those questioned said it's a major defeat, while 44 percent said it's a minor setback. Seventeen percent said it will no effect on the Democrats.

According to the poll, 46 percent of the public has a favorable opinion of the Democratic Party, with 44 percent viewing the Republican Party in a positive light. That's a change from October, when 53 percent had a favorable opinion of Democrats and 36 percent saw the GOP in a positive light.

While the survey's numbers are not great news for the Democrats, "the coming midterm campaign may not be smooth sailing for the Republicans either," Holland said. "Nearly half the public says they are angry at both parties; only one in ten are angry only at the Democrats."

All 435 seats in the House, as well as 18 Democratic-held and 18 Republican-held Senate seats, are up for grabs in November's midterm elections.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted January 22-24, following the January 19 special election in Massachusetts, with 1,009 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3 percentage points.

– CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report


Filed under: CNN Polls • Democrats • Popular Posts
soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. Julia - Native American from Idaho

    CNN, if the republicans gain control, that is the end of our so-called democracy, actually our country is severely lacking in providing humane services to the tax payers, that's free healthcare, like every other country in the world. 2012 may be the end of this country as we know it, especially if the repubs gain control. We will have the very very rich, and everybody else will be the very, very poor. Hmmm time for a Revolution, it happens every time.

    January 25, 2010 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  2. Bob

    I think it is good as well. After 1994, Clinton started governing from the center which helped this country. I hope that Obama starts more open dialogue with Republicans and we can get the country back on track.

    January 25, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  3. Noni

    "Most" Americans do not know what they are talking about. "Most" Americans do not read reliable newspapers, watch or listen to responsible news shows, or really think about what is going on. All Americans should be "mad as hell and not going to take it anymore" about the Supreme Court's latest decision but "most" Americans don't care. We are the Orwellian sheep who have allowed the Republican and Democrat pigs to take over and solve our problems. But that will change soo as big corporations, some foreign owned, will be steering the minds of "most" Americans toward whomever they, the corporations, want running our government.

    January 25, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  4. sammieb51

    Yeah, I think it is great that the GOP, that got us in this mess, stand a good chance to take over Senate/House again –

    January 25, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  5. JLM

    Put the Republicans back in charge and watch the total destruction of this Counrty. How soon do they forget.

    January 25, 2010 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  6. obama the liar

    it took only one year for America to absorb the lies of the leader of the Democratic Socialist Party.

    January 25, 2010 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  7. JS

    I AM SICK OF HEARING ABOUT WHAT 'MOST AMERICANS THINK'. MOST AMERICANS ARE AGAINST THE DEMOCRATIC SUPERMAJORITY, BUT ALSO AGAINST GRIDLOCK. MOST AMERICANS ARE WORRIED ABOUT UNEMPLOYMENT, AND WANT THE GOVERNMENT TO DO MORE, BUT ARE AGAINST ANYTHING THE GOVERNMENT WILL DO. MOST AMERICANS WANT BETTER EDUCATION SYSTEMS, BUT ARE AGAINST PAYING FOR IT. MOST AMERICANS WANT BETTER HEALTH CARE SYSTEMS, BUT ARE AGAINST PAYING FOR IT. MOST AMERICANS ARE ILL-INFORMED SPOILED BRATS. WHO CARES WHAT THEY THINK ON A MOMENT-TO-MOMENT BASIS??????????????

    January 25, 2010 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  8. Jay1975

    No one party should have all of the control. It was bad under Bush and is bad under Obama. No one party represents all of America and thus should not have all of the say.

    January 25, 2010 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  9. j

    I guess I'm in the minority. I prefer progressives to conservatives and would like to see more progressives win.

    January 25, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  10. valwayne

    If Republicans had been in control of Congress Obama would have had to compromise. The focus would have been on the economy and not the corrupt stimulous and health care bills. More money would have gone to tax cuts for small business and individuals who would be hiring people right now. And the massive massive corrupt spending going into the pockets of special interests couldn't have happened. We had divided Government in the 90s and that worked really well. If our nation is going to recover we have balance a far left wing President with a Republican Congress. Lets restore balance to Government in Nov!

    January 25, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
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