Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Job Approval of the 111th Congress: Only 17.4%

Real Clear Politics.

14 Comments:

At 3/23/2010 9:27 PM, Blogger Bret said...

Better to be feared than loved I guess.

 
At 3/24/2010 12:11 AM, Anonymous Lyle said...

One of the causes is that the public has seen the inside of the old smoke filled rooms in which things are done in congress. This is why in the past so much was done behind closed doors because it would destroy the illusions taught in school about how government really works. Just like how much does school teach about how bribery made government work in the 19th century. Government has always worked this way but never has the methods used been publically exposed.

 
At 3/24/2010 2:11 AM, Blogger Ron H. said...

>"This is why in the past so much was done behind closed doors...

Why do you say "in the past"?

 
At 3/24/2010 5:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's the issue with such a poll: Members of Congress know that "The public hates Congress, but they love me!"

The poll speaks to voters' attitudes towards a group. The elections will be about individuals, and individuals will be able to convince their specific voters that they brought home 'more Federal money'.

This is not an original thought. A Congressional staffer shared it with me years ago.

 
At 3/24/2010 7:09 AM, Blogger James Fraasch said...

Any idea how far back the approval ratings for Congress go?

I wonder how this fits in historical (pre-2000) context?

James

 
At 3/24/2010 8:06 AM, Anonymous Junkyard_hawg1985 said...

What in the world is that 17.4% of the population thinking?

 
At 3/24/2010 8:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

These polls are utterly worthless. The reelection rate consistently hovers around 90% despite peoples' supposed overwhelming disapproval of their representatives. Voters are lazy.

 
At 3/24/2010 10:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reelection rate consistently hovers around 90% despite peoples' supposed overwhelming disapproval of their representatives. Voters are lazy.

It's not that voters are lazy, it's that the politicians have managed to turn democracy on it's head. More and more politicians are being elected in districts gerrymandered to produce a predetermined political outcome. In essence, they are choosing their voters instead of the voters choosing them. There are reform groups working to address this problem, but as you may have predicted they are encountering stiff resistance from the political establishment.

 
At 3/24/2010 10:25 AM, Anonymous Junkyard_hawg1985 said...

"I wonder how this fits in historical (pre-2000) context?"

Looking back to the early 1990's, Congress had JA ratings this low. In 1992 they were about this bad and the Democrats only lost a handful of seats in the 1992 election. In 1994, they were still dismal and the Democrats got hammered. The difference is who controls the White House. If one party is in control of both the White House and Congress and Congress JA ratings are bad, the incumbent party tends to get hammered (Dems '94, Rep in '06).

ased on current polling, I expect Republicans to pick up around 80 House seats in November.

 
At 3/24/2010 2:36 PM, Blogger Methinks said...

The reelection rate consistently hovers around 90% despite peoples' supposed overwhelming disapproval of their representatives. Voters are lazy.

It's consistent for the period of time studied. My bet is that this period of time was a time of relative stability.

However, if it were true all the time, the Republicans would not have lost a majority and the Democrats wouldn't have gained a supermajority.

It's possible to eject your reps if you want.

 
At 3/24/2010 3:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Face it, the vast majority of voters are just plain lazy. It's not gerrymandering or campaign budgets - most people blindly vote along party lines which 9 times out of 10 means voting for the incumbent.

 
At 3/26/2010 8:54 PM, Blogger OBloodyHell said...

> Better to be feared than loved I guess.

Indeed. Machiavelli's point also led to the corollary of that notion:

"Among other things, being disarmed causes you to be despised."
- Machiavelli -

 
At 3/26/2010 8:58 PM, Blogger OBloodyHell said...

> "The public hates Congress, but they love me!"

I'm reminded of a Pennsylvania vanity plate.

Pennsylvania's license plates used to have the motto:
"You've got a friend in"
underneath was
"Pennsylvania"

Story was some wag got a vanity plate that said:

NOT YOU

ROFLMAO when I first heard about that.

I think when November rolls around, a lot of people will be pushing that voting button that says "NOT YOU"....

We'll see. If not, this republic is gone.

 
At 3/26/2010 9:55 PM, Blogger OBloodyHell said...

Anons I & II:


There was an extensive discussion of this somewhere that I was reading, but damned if I can figure out where.

One of the noted matters was that it's not a fully accurate statistic, because it's inherently subject to selection bias -- if you really believe your re-election chances are small, you probably don't run for the office (see Kennedy, Patrick, and Bayh, Evan)

That means that the chance of re-election is fairly high, because the unlikely ones drop out ahead of time and don't get counted.

The basic point is, it's more subtly complex than you may think. Gee. Politics 'r complex? Whoodathunkit?

 

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