Aug. 2, 2007

A Summer of Discontent with Washington

Summary of Findings As official Washington winds down for its summer holiday, all three branches of government are coming under fire from the American public. Just 29% approve of the way President Bush is handling his job, and only slightly more, 33%, approve of the job performance of the Democratic leaders of Congress. Even the […]

Aug. 2, 2007

Section 1: Congress and the Parties

Democratic Job Approval Public dissatisfaction with the performance of Democratic congressional leaders now stands at a new high for the 110th Congress. A 54% majority currently disapproves of the job Democratic leaders are doing, up from 49% a month ago and just 34% at the start of the legislative term in January. Barely one-in-three Americans […]

Jun. 7, 2007

Mixed Views on Immigration Bill

Summary of Findings The public is ambivalent about the immigration bill being debated by the Senate. Most Americans favor one of its key objectives, but the bill itself draws a mostly negative reaction from those who have heard about it. Just a third of those who have heard something about the bill favor it, while […]

Mar. 29, 2007

Democrats Fail to Impress in First 100 Days

Summary of Findings As the Democratic-led Congress approaches the 100-day mark, pluralities of Americans approve of the way that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are handling their leadership roles. However, the public gives Democrats mixed reviews for delivering on their campaign promises and for their policies and proposals. Slightly more […]

Mar. 26, 2007

Solid Majority Favors Congressional Troop Deadline

Summary of Findings A solid majority of Americans say they want their congressional representative to support a bill calling for a withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq by August 2008. Nearly six-in-ten (59%) say they would like to see their representative vote for such legislation, compared with just 33% who want their representative to oppose […]

Oct. 5, 2006

Iraq Looms Large in Nationalized Election

Summary of Findings Iraq has become the central issue of the midterm elections. There is more dismay about how the U.S. military effort in Iraq is going than at any point since the war began more than three years ago. And the war is the dominant concern among the majority of voters who say they […]

Apr. 20, 2006

Public Disillusionment with Congress at Record Levels

Summary of Findings The American public is angry with Congress, and this is bad news for the Republican Party. The belief that this Congress has accomplished less than its predecessors is markedly higher than at any point in the past nine years, and by a wide margin Republican leaders are blamed for this. Many more […]

Feb. 9, 2006

Bush a Drag on Republican Midterm Prospects

Summary of Findings Nine months before the midterm elections, the Democrats hold a sizable lead in the congressional horse race and an advantage on most major issues. Democrats lead by 50%-41% among registered voters in the test ballot, which is little changed from last September (52%-40%). While retaining a huge advantage on traditional party strengths […]

Jun. 15, 2005

Supreme Court’s Image Declines as Nomination Battle Looms

Summary of Findings With an aging Supreme Court possibly facing major changes, the court’s public image has eroded significantly. Currently, 57% of Americans have a favorable opinion of the Supreme Court, with 30% expressing an unfavorable view. In the past, favorable views of the court typically surpassed 70%; even in January 2001, shortly after the […]

Mar. 24, 2005

Disapproval of GOP Congressional Leaders, But Democrats Fare No Better

Summary of Findings The American public is not happy with the nation’s political leadership. President Bush’s approval rating remains below 50%, and just 39% approve of the job performance of Republican congressional leaders. Despite the paltry ratings for GOP leaders, however, Democrats have failed to benefit. The public has about the same low regard for […]

Jun. 27, 2002

Other Important Findings and Analysis

No Partisan Advantage The two parties continue to run neck and neck in the generic congressional ballot. Overall, 46% of registered voters support or lean toward the Democratic candidate in their district, while 44% favor the Republican. This reflects virtually unanimous support from partisans (93% of Republicans plan to vote Republican, 91% of Democrats plan […]

Jun. 18, 2001

Bush’s Europe Trip Yields No Public Dividend

Introduction and Summary As President Bush returns from his first overseas trip, his approval ratings are inching downward and an increasing number of Americans now say they disapprove of the job performance of GOP leaders on Capitol Hill. By contrast, the newly-installed Democratic leaders in the Senate are winning initially positive approval marks (50% vs. […]

May. 24, 2001

From News Interest To Lifestyles, Energy Takes Hold

Introduction and Summary Rising energy costs are having a major impact on how Americans are living their lives, affecting everything from their driving habits to the news stories they follow. More than two-thirds say they have been adjusting their thermostats to cope with soaring utility bills, and half report cutting back on driving to save […]

Apr. 26, 2001

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Environmental Balancing Act Most Americans (54%) express at least some confidence in Bush’s ability to balance environmental and economic demands, with 21% expressing “a lot” of confidence in the president in this area. This is comparable to how the public viewed Clinton’s environmental leadership. In 1997, 61% had some confidence in Clinton’s ability to balance […]

Jul. 27, 2000

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Might-Miss TV? Just one-in-ten Americans (13%) plan to watch all or most of the television coverage of the GOP convention, while another 28% say they’ll watch some of it. Older Americans are both more interested in the convention and more apt to watch the television coverage. But even among Republicans, there is scant interest in […]

Oct. 21, 1998

Other Important Findings

Who’s Voting Although turnout may be slightly lower this year than in 1994, there are no substantial differences in the composition of those most likely to go to the polls. As in the last midterm election, voters will be disproportionately older (49% over age 50, just 9% of those under 30), better educated and more […]

Aug. 7, 1998

More Rancorous, But Not “Do Nothing”

Introduction and Summary As Congress heads home for the summer campaign season, both parties face tough sells for their election themes. Despite Democratic charges of a Republican-led do-nothing Congress, Americans see the 105th Congress as no different than others in recent memory. But the GOP will have to shore up its image on issues, as […]

Nov. 21, 1997

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Clinton and Congressional Ratings Unchanged President Clinton’s approval ratings remain high and Americans credit Congress for its accomplishments this year, despite the failure of campaign finance and “fast track” trade legislation in the weeks leading up to the congressional adjournment. Nearly one in four Americans say this Congress has accomplished more than other recent Congresses, […]

Aug. 15, 1997

When Washington Works, Incumbents Prosper

Introduction and Summary For the first time in a very long time, Americans are happy with the country’s course and it is beginning to pay dividends to the political establishment. Not only are Bill Clinton’s approval ratings approaching Reagan’s at a comparable point, but support for Congressional incumbents is at a decade high, and interest […]

Apr. 11, 1997

Other Important Findings and Analyses

Not Much Going On… The public is unimpressed with the performance of the 105th Congress thus far. When asked to name the most important thing that has happened in the new Congress so far this year, fully 72% could not cite a single item. Those who responded gave a random assortment of legislative initiatives, led […]