The legislative branch has long been unpopular among a wide range of Americans, and the current Democratic-controlled makeup is no exception.
According to a new Rasmussen poll, only 21% of likely voters say they believe Congress is doing a good or excellent job — and more than half believe it is performing poorly.
A long record of disapproval
When asked about their own representatives, the numbers were slightly higher with 31% of respondents providing favorable reviews. Still, 43% of voters said that they did not believe any members of Congress were doing a good job.
The approval numbers are not altogether unusual, though. Congress has only reached 25% approval once since 2007.
In the latest survey, only 16% of those polled said they believe Congress cares about them, compared to 59% who said that they don’t.
Democrats appear to be benefitting more from partisanship among their constituents, though, with 38% of that party’s members saying that they believe Congress is doing a good job. Only 9% of Republicans and 15% of independents said the same.
Notably, Congress earned slightly more approval from Democrats than disapproval, with just 34% responding that lawmakers were doing a poor job. A much higher 70% of GOP voters and 60% of independents gave unfavorable marks to the elected officials.
Among the same group of voters who said they believe President Joe Biden is doing a good job, the numbers unsurprisingly closely mirrored the Democratic voter results. About 37% of respondents in this group signaled approval of Congress.
Conversely, just 2% of those who disapproved of Biden also approved of Congress, and nearly 9 in 10 voters in that group disapproved. Older voters, women, and whites were more likely to disapprove of Congress than other demographic groups, the poll found.
Even though a majority clearly disapproves of the job they are doing, a prevailing narrative has emerged that voters depend on lawmakers for assistance such as stimulus checks, expanded unemployment, and social programs.
As former President Ronald Reagan once stated: “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.'”
It seems clear that many voters still agree with that sentiment. While it would be impossible for Congress to please all Americans under any circumstances, polling results show that lawmakers can displease a clear majority of them by pursuing unrealistic expectations when the best course of action is probably simply getting out of the way.