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Congress’s approval rating has slipped to the lowest level this year, according to a poll released Wednesday by Gallup.
The poll found 11 percent of people in the United States approve of Congress, which is its lowest job approval rating this year.
It’s also only 2 percentage points higher than the all-time low of 9 percent approval from November 2013 after the last government shutdown.
Meanwhile, 86 percent of the public said they disapprove of Congress.
Gallup began tracking congressional approval ratings 41 years ago and the ratings since 2011 have been among the worst recorded. Congress experienced a record-high 84 percent approval rating in October 2001, a month after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
The new survey also found 8 percent of Republicans said they approve of Congress while 13 percent of independents and 11 percent of Democrats said the same about lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
The poll comes just weeks after Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, was elected as speaker of the House and after Congress passed a major budget deal to raise spending limits and lift the debt ceiling into March 2017. Lawmakers still must pass a spending package before the Dec. 11 deadline to fund the government and avert another shutdown.
The poll surveyed 1,021 adults between November 4 and 8 with a 4 percentage point margin of error.
How is it possible for the general public to so despise Congress when they have two year and six year intervals to replace its members? Because, quite simply, they almost never do! Most Americans only pay attention to the Presidential races and usually the Governors’ races in their respective states and do not take much notice of the Congressional and state representative races. And yet it is Congress that makes the laws and decides the federal budgets for the United States, while state legislatures do the same at the state level. The President and the Governors have very little power, so merely electing them means almost nothing.
This is why the American people elected Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012, then watched in amazement when Republicans took control of Congress in 2010 and 2014, causing incredible amounts of gridlock later. If you do not vote in ALL elections and for ALL positions in government, you end up with a government that you do not approve of! It is the extremists that take advantage of the mid-term elections to get their stooges into Congress….and there are FAR more right-wing extremists in America than left-wing ones. You can blame dogmatic Christian denominations for that as well as the media being controlled largely by corporations with their own economic and political agendas!
Also, most Americans tend to support their own Representatives or Senators and assume that the “other ones” are the problem. That is not true! You can only replace the members of Congress that are supposed to represent you, so if you do not vote them out, you are to blame for the failures of Congress. Not other people in different states and districts.
And of course, there is gerrymandering too.