People hate Congress. But love their own Representative...

by - May 09, 2013

In 2012, Congressional approval averaged 15 percent, the lowest in nearly four decades of Gallup polling. And yet, 90 percent of House Members and 91 percent of Senators who sought re-election won last November. The seeming paradox between the low regard with which people hold Congress and the high rate of re-election of incumbents is explained well by new data released by Gallup on Thursday that points to a simple reality: People hate Congress but (generally) like their Member of Congress.
 Washington Post

Americans More Approving of Their Own District's Representative Although Americans overwhelmingly disapprove of the job Congress in general is doing, voters re-elect most members of Congress in every election. This phenomenon is partly explained by the finding that Americans have significantly more positive views of their own representative than they do of Congress overall. About half (46%) of Americans say they approve of the job the representative from their own congressional district is doing. This is on the low end of what Gallup has found historically, although it hasn't asked this question often and not since 1992. From 1990-1992, Gallup asked Americans this question eight times, with approval ratings ranging from 49% to 66% and averaging 58%. In a lone 1977 reading, 55% of Americans approved of their congressional representative. However, the data suggest that even though Americans continue to be more positive toward their own representative than toward Congress as a whole, they are a bit more negative about the former now than they have been in the past.

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