Poll: Congress' new level of awfulness
June 13th, 2013
10:55 AM ET
11 months ago

Poll: Congress' new level of awfulness

Washington (CNN) - Americans' confidence in Congress as an institution has hit an all-time low, according to a new national poll.

Asked about a list of institutions in American society, only 10% of those questioned in a Gallup survey released Thursday say they have confidence in Congress. That's down three percentage points from last year, and according to their release, "this is the lowest level of confidence Gallup has found, not only for Congress, but for any institution on record."

Congress ranks last on a list of 16 institutions. At the top of the list: The U.S. military. Seventy-six percent say they have confidence in the armed forces. The presidency ranked fifth, at 36%.

Gallup's been asking this question since 1973. Back then 42% said they had confidence in Congress, which was the legislative body's high point. Confidence in Congress has been below 20% since 2006.

The poll indicates little partisan divide.

"Democrats, independents, and Republicans are about equally likely to express low confidence in Congress. This is a change from the past and likely reflects the split control of Congress," says the Gallup release.

MORE: You're starting to remember Bush fondly

The Democrats control the Senate and the Republicans control the House of Representatives.

This low level of confidence is in-line with the most recent polling over the couple of months of the approval rating for Congress, which stood between 11% and 17% in the various surveys.

The Gallup poll was conducted June 1-4, with 1,529 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.


Filed under: Congress • Polls
soundoff (36 Responses)
  1. Malory Archer

    Keep up the good work tighty righties!

    June 13, 2013 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  2. saywhat

    Neglecting America First, the interests of its people, a self serving agenda, catering to foreign lobbies & special interest, partisan bickering is all that the Congress has been 'workin' at.
    The dominant mindset and majority influenced by neocons has failed the people.

    June 13, 2013 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  3. rs

    No surprise here- with the complete inaction in Congress, and the ability of the membership to completely fail to hear the needs and wants of the American people- jobs, economy, and gun control- all ranging in 60%-90% approval. It is utterly clear that Republicans played a shell game- they promised jobs on '10, and delivered record numbers of anti-abortion bills, and filibusters. There are judgeships and agency head positions open since Bush's Administration- little or negative action on those fronts.
    We have a failed branch of government in Congress- the complete opposite of 1973 when we had a failed Presidency.

    June 13, 2013 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  4. Data Driven

    Symptomatic of these hilarious numbers was the spectacle yesterday, when Congresscritters spent all day badgering the NSA for duly pursuing activities Congress approved not once, but twice, in the past decade.

    June 13, 2013 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  5. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Americans' confidence in Congress as an institution has hit an all-time low, according to a new national poll.
    -------------------------------------------------
    Oh come on!
    They are at a 10% approval rating.
    They can still drop 8 or 9 more points.
    Plenty of room to sink lower.

    June 13, 2013 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  6. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    Congress sucks! What else is new?

    June 13, 2013 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  7. Anonymous

    Congress is at 10%. Television news is at 23%. The presidency is at 36%. I'd say America has had enough of the political BS to last a lifetime.

    June 13, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  8. ST

    I would be delighted to know who are those 10% who still have confidence in Congress. Are they family members or what?

    June 13, 2013 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  9. Anonymous

    John Boehner / Johnnie" Walker 2016
    Try taking it with red bull, monster or lemon juice. Do you know ... I love the taste of Johnnie Walker Red,

    ========

    What went wrong with Congress ?

    June 13, 2013 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  10. Anonymous

    They do NOTHING !

    June 13, 2013 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  11. Anonymous

    Stubborn is as stubborn does ... yes, GOPerville?
    It's too bad y'all decided to drag America into the gutter with you.

    June 13, 2013 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  12. Malloy

    Obviously 10% of the respondents are FOX News Tea Trolls. 0% of rational people have any confidence in our congress. The Repugnicans have a vested interest in insuring that this president gets nothing accomplished. That way they can go back to their bigoted supporters and proclaim that a black cannot run this country. Once again, let's hear it for the Greedy Old Party.

    June 13, 2013 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  13. Bill from GA

    To show a picture of a dog in an article about Congress is insulting.

    What you got against DOGS???

    June 13, 2013 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  14. demogoat

    Congress is infected with Kruzneuonia and needs a McConnelllectomy, and Boehnerphobophobia has no cure.

    June 13, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  15. Lynda/Minnesota

    Anonymous

    Stubborn is as stubborn does ... yes, GOPerville?
    It's too bad y'all decided to drag America into the gutter with you.
    ------

    Oops. Forgot to add my name before hitting the post button. My bad.

    June 13, 2013 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  16. Jinx9to88

    LMAO!!! This is funny.

    June 13, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  17. Colorado

    Well of course Americans are disgusted with Congress. They haven't done a thing for years and years.

    June 13, 2013 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  18. Ken in MO

    Who's fault is this? We are the ones that keep reelecting them. Most of Congress is relected every two years....we are telling them that we approve of what they are doing.

    June 13, 2013 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  19. aCriticalEye

    The cop and guard dog in the pic illustrate how worried the law makers are. Lets hire a couple more law enforcement officer to protect our sorry do nothing asses. The the civil war starts, they'll hire more guards to protect themselves.

    June 13, 2013 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  20. lottie

    surprised they are that high. Wake up repos. Your insistence on finding fault and scandal has not helped your image. Try helping the American people instead of voting to repeal the affordable care act 37 times. Do you have nothing better to do with your time. Are you ready for your summer break yet????

    June 13, 2013 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  21. GI Joe

    The republican poll, so it means that's the feeling of conservatives. LOL

    Come one you guys, you can go lower than that right before we kick you out next year. Just keep hating on women, blacks, latinos and young folks - and keep trying to stop them from voting. LOL

    June 13, 2013 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  22. Joi Gibson

    DUH!!!!! And yet they can't seem to get out of their own way. They, especially certain House members, are more concerned with so-called scandals and looking up their butts to find evidence to support their allegations. And then there is the Senate, where certain members do not even want to have a debate on the issues, especially if the President supports those issues. How childish can they be. I would love a job where I get paid upwards of $150,000 and health insurance for doing absolutely NOTHING. The sad thing about it is, they do not seem to care.

    June 13, 2013 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  23. Former GOP

    ..............Tea Party GOOD TIMES...............hahahahahHAHAHAHAHAHA

    June 13, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  24. Rudy NYC

    I know how most of these polls work. You ask several questions similar to what you really want to know, so that people cannot figure out what it is that you are looking for. In this case, you could ask approve/disapprove on several issues when, in fact, you are only interested in just one, Congress. Too bad they didn't differentiate between House and Senate, but then the results may have been skewed by partisanship once people figured out what you were looking for.

    June 13, 2013 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  25. Malory Archer

    Ken in MO

    Who's fault is this? We are the ones that keep reelecting them. Most of Congress is relected every two years....we are telling them that we approve of what they are doing.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    You can thank extreme rightwing gerrymandering for that. And if they get their way they plan to do the same to presidential electoral votes which would pretty much mean that anyone voting for the Dem candidate would be considered three-fifths of a person.

    June 13, 2013 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
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