The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Unsurprisingly, a Washington Post-ABC News poll released Wednesday finds that Americans continue to disapprove of the way Congress is doing — or not doing — its job.

According to the poll, which surveyed registered voters across the nation, only 34 percent of respondents approve of congressional Democrats’ job performance. Just 11 percent approve “strongly.”

But if that number seems low, consider the meager 25 percent who said the same of Republicans — and the minuscule 6 percent that “strongly” approve of their performance.

A majority of voters are upset with lawmakers on Capitol Hill: Democrats receive a 60 percent disapproval rating from voters, and their GOP colleagues get an even worse 71 percent.

Despite the awful numbers, both parties’ images are slowly recovering after months of dysfunction. Last month, 64 percent of Americans disapproved of Democrats and 73 percent felt the same way about Republicans.

The disappointing news for Congress comes a month after the two feuding parties united in a temporary – and, for political purposes, necessary — front to pass Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Representative Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) budget deal. As The Washington Post points out, however, the temporary solution has not been enough to restore either party’s image.

With tensions running high in Washington, the public is highly polarized, and more skeptical of lawmakers whose ideology does not align with their own. As the chart below shows, 88 percent of Democrats and 72 percent of Independents disapprove of congressional Republicans.

WAPO poll 3 - Democrats and Ind

On the other side, 88 percent of Republican voters and 67 percent of Independents disapprove of congressional Democrats.

WAPO poll 2-Republicans and Independents

Unless Congress overcomes the deep party splits that hinder lawmakers’ ability to work together to resolve issues relevant to the public – and in a more timely manner – its approval numbers are sure to continue to suffer.

The Washington Post-ABC News poll was conducted from January 8-12, and surveyed 1,011 Americans. It has a margin of error of +/- 3.5 percentage points.

Charts via The Washington Post

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

President Joe Biden

As the nation's political press obsesses over the fate of the administration's Build Back Better proposal, nothing less than the ultimate success or failure of Joe Biden's presidency is said to be at stake. And yet here's the great paradox: taken separately, the elements of the Democrats' social spending proposals poll extremely well.

According to a recent CBS News poll, support for federal funding to reduce prescription drug prices is favored by 88 percent of American voters. Adding Medicare coverage of dental, eye and hearing polls at 84 percent. Another 73 percent back expanding paid family and medical leave. And 67 percent think that universal pre-kindergarten programs for three and four year olds are a good idea.

Keep reading... Show less

Dr. Anthony Fauci

By Humeyra Pamuk

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Vaccines for kids between the ages of 5 and 11 will likely be available in the first half of November, top U.S. infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said on Sunday, predicting a timetable that could see many kids getting fully vaccinated before the end of the year.

Keep reading... Show less
{{ }}