Poll: New low for Congress approval
December 15th, 2010
09:08 AM ET
12 years ago

Poll: New low for Congress approval

Washington (CNN) - Americans' approval of Congress has hit a new low, according to a new national survey.

A Gallup poll released Wednesday indicates that only 13 percent of the public gives Congress a thumbs up on the way its handling its job, with 83 percent saying they disapprove. The 13 percent approval rating is the worst Gallup has measured in the more than three decades it has been tracking public opinion of Congress, with the 83 percent an all time high for a disapproval rating.

A CBS News poll released earlier this month indicated that 17 percent of Americans approved of how Congress was doing its job, with more than seven in ten saying they disapprove.

According to the Gallup survey, only 16 percent of Democrats approve of how Congress is handling its duties, down from 38 percent in October. Thirteen percent of independents questioned and seven percent of Republicans give Congress a thumbs up.

The Gallup poll was conducted Dec. 10-12, with 1,019 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.

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Filed under: Congress • Polls
soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. Eric in Denver

    I can't believe it is even that high.

    December 15, 2010 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  2. Clwyd

    Expect to reach new lows next year after the idiots that the voters sent, mostly republicans, take office. They have no clue about government and most have been bought into power by spending that the Robert's Court allowed. How to buy American by big corporations and special interest groups!

    December 15, 2010 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  3. EddyL

    As long as Congress, and especially the GOP Congress protect the rich, they get no respect from me.

    December 15, 2010 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  4. USA401

    Congress is truly the only blaming factor in how this country got to where we are. Presidents are just representatives/puppets and only last a short time. Whereas Congressmen are around for years which could mean many years of bad policies. Ultimately it is congress who decides the fate of the country and I believe they should take more or all the blame for issues going forward and less on whom ever is president.

    December 15, 2010 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  5. Firedog51

    As for the GOP who cares as long as it doesn't get under 2%?

    December 15, 2010 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  6. Jane

    Imagine that - when you work for yourselves instead of the people pushing "your"agenda that will be the result. And Pelosi and Reid think they are the King and Queen of the kingdom.

    December 15, 2010 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  7. ConsiderThis

    What else would you expect? Congress is comprised of people elected from our society. What this means is that Congress can't be any better than we (society). Garbage in, garbage out. Case closed. Welcome to reality.

    December 15, 2010 10:42 am at 10:42 am |

    No surprise that Americans rate Congress so low. It's well to remember, however, that every one of them was elected by the same people who now give them a low rating. So is it Congress that has failed, the voters or the electoral process?

    December 15, 2010 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  9. Caste

    13% huh, seems a little high to me. Does that 13% include the actual senators? If so, that could be throwing the numbers.

    December 15, 2010 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  10. Jakes

    And approval is not getting any higher with Democrats trying to ram through a 1.1 Trillion dollar spending bill the GOP has not even seen. This is why people are so frustrated. Hey I guess the GOP is about to get its turn at crafting legislation without one bit of input from the Democrats but Congress needs to work together. But I have a feeling the GOP will not be in a sharing mood when they take the reins.

    December 15, 2010 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  11. Sarah, Northern Colorado

    I foresee one of two things happening. Either:

    1) Congress will realize they've let the American people down and get their act together and make amends, or,

    2) They'll continue to point fingers at each other and get nothing done, while Boehner continues to cry in the corner.

    I'm betting on the latter rather than the former.

    December 15, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  12. Randy

    What people are saying is the we no longer have a two party system but a system where two groups politicians complete for the bribes of the wealthiest corporations and Americans at the public's expense. There interests are not being represented by the Republicans or the Democrats but have no where to turn to since both parties collude to prevent a third party.

    December 15, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  13. Firedog51

    And here I thought the American people had spoken in November, that's what the right continues to say over and over.

    December 15, 2010 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  14. Four and The Door

    This only confirms what we learned in the mid-term electrions last month. Certainly these approval ratings will be up 1 year from now. We are already seeing some good changes in the way Washington does business. More power to you Speaker Boehner!

    December 15, 2010 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  15. Former Republican - Now Independent

    I wonder what the rating would have been if the Dems had retained their majority in the House.

    December 15, 2010 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  16. NameM Faure

    Not a big surprise there. Democrats are pissed that they caved to the GOP without a fight after 2 years of obstructionism. And independents and conservatives are pissed because rather than use their newfound power instead of pushing for job creation the GOP forced a tax cut for the wealthy further increasing the debt and weakening the economy that is already brittle. Sounds like Hannity's ignorant views are finally losing traction. "Tax cuts for the wealthy increases tax revenue. Its supply side economics." Go back to school Sean, and this time actually listen when they explain the Laffer curve. Can we get an intelligent pundit one day?

    December 15, 2010 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  17. katiec

    Our country is in a world of hurt. When you have a political party who has goals of destroy our president, win at any cost, has conducted 89 fillibusters to stop any improvements to our economy, safety, health, etc than you have a political party that has lost all sight of what they were elected to do, thrown away all integrity and honor.
    When you have a political party that will sacrifice us and our country for their undying support for Wall St, big business, the wealthy, then you have a political party that is well on their way to becoming our country's most dangerous
    domestic terrorists.

    December 15, 2010 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  18. Ed

    13% approval? Impossible, it has to be half that at best.

    December 15, 2010 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  19. Dave

    It won't make any difference...Congress will continue to function (or should I say, dysfunction) they way they have been. However, I wish these "approve/disapprove" surveys would challenge the respondents to be a bit more specific about what they approve or disapprove of. For most of Americans, it's become fashionable to bash the government without providing specifics...and sadly, most Americans can barely articulate the details of the issues.

    December 15, 2010 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
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