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New Poll Finds Approval of Congress at 24-Year Low

September 2, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

As Congress gets ready to return from the August recess to their work in D.C., they’ll be doing so with the lowest level of public support that they’ve had in decades:

Americans are extremely displeased with Congress, and there are already some signs that this could take a toll on the Democrats in the 2010 midterm elections. Currently, 37% express a favorable opinion of Congress, while 52% hold an unfavorable view. Positive opinions of Congress have declined by 13 points since April and are now at one of their lowest points in more than two decades of Pew Research Center surveys.

Go read more about the poll results from Pew. Lots of nuanced information in there. For example, the Democrats are no longer more trusted to manage the government than the Republicans are, but on a lot of the big issues – healthcare, the economy, the federal budget – their approval ratings are still higher (but shrinking). Independents have solidly shifted their support from Democrats to the Republicans. The public opinion on healthcare reform is unchanged from July – 46% oppose it, 39% support it – but a full 55% of Americans say they are confident in Obama’s handling of the issue.

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