Jan. 19, 2012

Section 2: Views of Congress

As Congress returns for the 2012 session, the American public’s view of the institution is as negative as it has ever been in over 25 years of Pew Research Center surveys. Just 23% of Americans say they have a favorable opinion of Congress, while 69% have an unfavorable view. These opinions are little changed from […]

Dec. 15, 2011

Frustration with Congress Could Hurt Republican Incumbents

Public discontent with Congress has reached record levels, and the implications for incumbents in next year’s elections could be stark. Two-in-three voters say most members of Congress should be voted out of office in 2012 – the highest on record. And the number who say their own member should be replaced matches the all-time […]

Dec. 15, 2011

Section 1: Congress, The Parties, and the Anti-Incumbent Mood

As voters look toward the 2012 congressional elections, anti-incumbent sentiment is running at or near record highs. Just 20% of voters say they would like to see most members of Congress reelected in the next congressional election. Two-thirds (67%) think most members of Congress should be replaced. This exceeds – by double digits – previous […]

Nov. 17, 2011

Section 2: Views of Obama and Congressional Leaders

A year out from the 2012 election, as many Americans approve of the job Obama is doing as president (46%) as disapprove (46%). This marks a modest improvement from August and October when slightly more disapproved than approved of Obama’s job performance. Obama continues to enjoy the support of young people and non-whites: Majorities of […]

Sep. 26, 2011

Obama Draws More Confidence than GOP Leaders on Deficit

As the nation prepares for another round of deficit reduction debates, the public’s confidence in congressional leaders, particularly Republican leaders in Congress, has plummeted. Just 35% say they have a great deal or fair amount of confidence in Republican leaders in Congress to do the right thing when it comes to dealing with the […]

Aug. 25, 2011

Section 3: Congress, the Political Parties and the Tea Party

Just a quarter of Americans (25%) say they have a favorable opinion of Congress, while 70% have an unfavorable view. This is among the lowest favorable ratings for Congress in more than two decades of Pew Research Center surveys. The number expressing a favorable opinion of Congress has fallen by nine points since March (from […]

Jul. 18, 2011

Obama Draws More Confidence than Boehner, McConnell or Cantor on Debt Ceiling

The public expresses far more confidence in President Obama than it does in congressional leaders of both parties when it comes to the debate over the debt ceiling. Nonetheless, only about half of Americans (48%) have even a fair amount of confidence in Obama to do the right thing when it comes to dealing with […]

Mar. 3, 2011

Section 2: Views of Political Leaders and Compromise

In the new survey, Barack Obama’s job approval stands at 51%; 39% disapprove of the way Obama is handling his job as president. That is little changed from early February (49% approve vs. 42% disapprove). Nonetheless, the balance of opinion regarding Obama’s job performance remains more positive than it was in the fall, when about […]

Dec. 7, 2010

Section 2: Views of the Parties, Congress & Obama

The public’s views of the Republican Party are little changed from September, before the party’s gains in the midterm election. Currently, 41% have a favorable opinion of the GOP while 52% have an unfavorable opinion. In September, 43% had a favorable view of the Republican Party and 49% had an unfavorable view. Views of the […]

Oct. 6, 2010

Possible Negatives for Candidates: Vote for Bank Bailout, Palin Support

In the upcoming midterm elections, two factors have emerged as major potential negatives for candidates: Fully 46% say they would be less likely to vote for a candidate who supported government loans to banks during the financial crisis two years ago, while nearly as many (42%) say they would be less likely to vote […]

Jul. 1, 2010

Section 2: Views Of The Parties And Their Leaders

With the 2010 midterm elections approaching, the public remains highly critical of the leaders of both political parties in Congress. Just more than a third (35%) approve of Democratic leaders’ performance, while 53% disapprove. Approval of Democratic leaders has fallen 13 points since February 2009. GOP congressional leaders receive comparable ratings. Just 31% approve of […]

Mar. 18, 2010

Section 2: Views of Congress

Americans remain highly critical of the job performance of both Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress. Many offer harsh assessments when asked for one word impressions of the current Congress. Among the most frequently offered are variations on dysfunctional, corrupt, self-serving and inept. Job approval ratings for the leaders of both parties (31% for Democratic […]

Jan. 14, 2010

Section 4: Congress and Politics

As 2010 begins, Americans are divided about whether they are more likely to vote for the Democratic or Republican candidate in the midterm congressional elections in November. The public gives relatively poor ratings to the leaders of both parties in Congress and only one-quarter say Obama and GOP leaders in Congress are working together to […]

Dec. 16, 2009

Mixed Views of Obama at Year’s End

Public opinion about President Barack Obama and his major polices continues to be divided as the year comes to a close. His overall approval rating is 49%, which is largely unchanged from November (51%). However, the percentage expressing at least a fair amount of confidence in Obama to do the right thing when it […]

Oct. 8, 2009

Section 1: Views of Obama and Congressional Leaders

Barack Obama’s job approval ratings have remained stable over the course of the last several months. Currently, 52% of Americans approve of the president’s job performance while 36% disapprove. Eight-in-ten (80%) Democrats approve of the way Obama is handling his job, compared with 49% of independents and just 20% of Republicans. As with his overall […]

Apr. 8, 2009

Partisan Bickering Is Back, Says Public

Shortly before President Obama took office in January, the public was uncharacteristically optimistic that Republicans and Democrats would work together more to solve problems in the year ahead. Less than three months later, those expectations have faded and most see a return to partisan politics in Washington. A majority (53%) currently says that Republicans […]

Mar. 16, 2009

Section 3: The Republican Party’s Doldrums

Barack Obama’s job approval ratings are not the only ones to have slipped lately. Public approval of the job Republican leaders in Congress are doing has fallen to the lowest point in Pew Research Center surveys going all the way back to 1994. Just 28% of Americans say they approve of the job Republicans are […]

Nov. 7, 2007

Public Dissatisfied with Democratic Leaders, But Still Happy They Won

Summary of Findings A year after the Democratic Party won control of both houses of Congress, Americans are increasingly dissatisfied with the party’s congressional leaders. Just 31% approve of their job performance, down 10 points since February. Despite these tepid ratings, most Americans (54%) say that they are happy that the Democrats won control of […]

Jan. 11, 2006

Americans Taking Abramoff, Alito and Domestic Spying in Stride

Summary of Findings The public has been hardly stirred by the flurry of major Washington news in the early days of 2006. Jack Abramoff’s admission that he bribed members of Congress has sparked little interest, with just 18% paying very close attention to news reports on the disgraced Washington lobbyist. An overwhelming majority of Americans […]

Sep. 15, 2005

Economic Pessimism Grows, Gas Prices Pinch

Summary of Findings A summer’s worth of bad news, culminating with Hurricane Katrina, has taken a toll on the public’s mood, particularly when it comes to views of the economy and energy costs. The public’s economic expectations, while hardly robust in the spring, have grown much more negative. Nearly four-in-ten (37%) think economic conditions will […]