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Voters Think Congress Is Listening A Bit More

With midterm elections over and a new Congress seated, more voters believe most members of Congress care what's on their minds.

A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey finds that nearly half (48%) of Likely U.S. Voters say the majority of those in Congress don't care what their constituents think. Still, that's down 12 points from 60% last August as the fall midterm congressional campaigns were heating up. 

Thirty-five percent (35%) of voters believe most Congress members do care what their constituents think, up from 22% in the earlier survey. Seventeen percent (17%) are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.) 

The previous Congress with both the House and Senate controlled by Democrats consistently earned low approval ratings from voters. Yet despite the GOP takeover of the House and an increase in the number of Republican senators, Democrats remain slightly more convinced that most in Congress do listen to their voters. Fifty-four percent (54%) of Republicans and 50% of voters not affiliated with either major party say most members of Congress don't care what their constituents think, but a plurality (42%) of those in the president's party disagrees.

However, voters continue to feel the Republican agenda in Congress is less extreme than that of congressional Democrats.

Fifty-seven percent (57%) believe the average Democrat in Congress is more liberal than they are, but voters remain more evenly divided about the ideology of the average Republican. 

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it's in the news, it's in our polls). Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

 The survey of 1,000 Likely U.S. Voters was conducted on January 15-16, 2011 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.

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