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Congressional Performance

Most Consider ‘Serious’ Work from Congress Unlikely

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Congress continues to earn mediocre reviews for its job performance, with voters more convinced than ever that it’s unlikely to focus on the country’s biggest problems.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that just 30% of Likely U.S. Voters think Congress is likely to seriously address the most important problems facing our nation. Sixty-eight percent (68%) consider that unlikely. These findings includes only 10% who feel Congress is Very Likely to tackle the big issues and 36% who say it’s Not At All Likely to do so. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

This is the highest level of cynicism in surveying since 2006. In most surveys, doubt about Congress’ seriously addressing the most important problems has run in the mid-50s.

Only 18% of voters give Congress good or excellent marks for the way it is doing its job, down from 24% a year ago. Fifty-one percent (51%) rate Congress’ job performance as poor.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on October 3 and 6, 2019 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Twenty-eight percent (28%) of voters think Congress should deal with illegal immigration first, followed by 23% who say President Trump’s impeachment should be the priority. Nineteen percent (19%) say health care should come first.

Twenty-two percent (22%) of Republicans and 23% of Democrats give Congress positive marks for its work performance, but only nine percent (9%) of voters not affiliated with either major party agree.

Thirty-nine percent (39%) of Democrats think Congress is likely to seriously address the nation’s most important problems, a view shared by just 26% of GOP voters and 24% of unaffiliateds.

Voters under 40 are more likely than their elders to expect Congress to tackle the country’s biggest problems.

Sixty-seven percent (67%) of voters who Strongly Approve of the job Trump is doing rate Congress’ job performance as poor. Forty-five percent (45%) of those who Strongly Disapprove of how the president is performing agree.

Voters by a 52% to 39% margin think it is better for the country if Congress works with Trump most of the time.

Voters definitely have mixed feelings about Trump’s political savvy, but most think the president listens to voter concerns a lot more than Congress does.

In March, 51% agreed with Trump that “we have people in Congress, right now we have people in Congress that hate our country.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

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