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Monday, March 21, 2016

What America Thinks: Voters Still Down on Congress

In the heat of the presidential election, voters haven’t forgotten about Congress—though maybe they wish they had. How do they feel about Congress these days? We decided to find out what America thinks.

Likely U.S. Voters continue to give Congress dismal marks for its performance. There was a brief glimmer of hopefulness when Republicans took control of the Senate as well as the House last year, but then Congress’ numbers fell back to the levels seen during the Nancy Pelosi era of Democratic control. Now GOP voters are just as unhappy with the Republican-led Congress as everyone else is. That unhappiness, in fact, is one of the key reasons outsider candidates Donald Trump and Ted Cruz are the surprise leaders in the race for the GOP presidential nomination.

Two-out-of-three voters are angry at the current policies of the federal government, but even more (84%) are angry at Congress. Voters want Congress to work together more with President Obama and are more likely to blame the congressional GOP for the gridlock. But they also don’t want the president doing anything that Congress hasn’t signed off on.

It doesn’t help that voters in both political parties still smell corruption on Capitol Hill: 61% think most representatives in Congress are willing to sell their vote for either cash or a campaign contribution and suspect that their own local representative already has.

Control of the House is likely to remain in GOP hands this November, but control of the Senate could be up for grabs. These negative voter attitudes suggest anything could happen.

For Rasmussen Reports, I’m Alex Boyer. Remember, if it’s in the news, it’s in our polls.