Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Congressional approval numbers in the toilet

Like we needed Gallup to point out the obvious. Seriously, we know that a lot of people aren't happy with how Congress is doing it's job. But it's nice to know that Congress's fecklessness hasn't been lost on the nation, as a whole. So, it's not just us that have less respect for these monkeys:

Only 12 percent of Americans now have confidence in Congress, the lowest percentage in the 35 years that the Gallup Poll has tracked the number.

Americans now view Congress less favorably any of the 14 other American institutions tracked by Gallup, including big business, newspapers and health maintenance organizations.

Even as President Bush’s approval rating languishes at a record low, more than twice as many Americans have confidence in the presidency — 26 percent — than have confidence in Congress.

The Democrats have controlled both houses of the Congress since January 2007. It remains to be seen whether the Democratic Party brand will find itself chained to the poor public view of the legislative branch. A recent analysis of ABC News-Washington Post polls found that in April the Democrats held a 24-point lead over President Bush as "the stronger leadership force in Washington." Today, it's a tie.

While Americans have long viewed their local representative more favorably than Congress as a whole, the public's current view of Congress is exceptionally poor. Today's 19 percent approval rating (a different measure than “confidence”) ties the record low of August 2007 and March 1992.

Friday's survey showed an across-the-board disapproval of Washington, with only 32 percent of Americans expressing confidence in the Supreme Court.

No one is pleased with Congress, and it doesn't matter which party is taking the beating. Both Republicans and Democrats have been slammed by the nation for putting together the pork-laden Farm Bill. While the far Left fever swamp will continue to rah-rah Nancy Pelosi's and Harry Reid's idiotic obstructionism, the nation's not happy with them. They made a promise to the nation when they ran to recapture the Congress. The "most ethical Congress ever" was Pelosi's infamous refrain. And what did we get for that promise?

There's the Countrywide Six scandal.

A non-transparent ethics/lobbying reform bill.

A climate bill that would have severely hurt this nation's economy.

Comprehensive immigration reform that was anything but comprehensive, or even close to reform.

Continued obstruction of the president's judicial nominees, prompting the GOP to react the only way it can.

This is what we got when the majority of the nation decided to change leadership and control in Congress. We sympathized with the public. the Republicans weren't faring any better, but our warning at the times was simple: If you put the Democrats in charge, things will only get worse, and you will rue the day. It appears, on the heels of these new approval numbers, that the nation has finally accepted its own selfishness in demanding change. See, the Democrats don't do any better than our side did, and they are, in fact, worse. They have not fulfilled even a minute number of promises they made in 2006. Yes, they got their minimum wage hike passed. They put together what they called ethics reform. But that's about it. (No, we don't credit them for renaming any post offices.)

They have acted like spoiled, petulant brats. They have fought the president tooth-and-nail on our efforts in this war and on his judges. They have done everything they can to obstruct progress. Now we don't put a ton of faith in Congress. The Framers warned of doing that. "A government strong enough to provide for everything is strong enough to take it all away." We still believe in a small, less intrusive government. Congress is a "necessary evil," if you will, to this nation. But they should be doing what we want them to do. They should have their feet held to the fire. And when they make promises, they'd better fulfill them.

Democrats hare giddy at their prospects this fall of holding onto Congress. The White House is another issue, and one we'll continue to argue over. We simply don't think that Obama's the right guy to be president. His ideas are outside the mainstream and radical. But Democrats in Congress should pay close attention to their approval numbers. If only 13% like what they're doing and trust them to keep doing it, that means 87% ain't too happy with them. We'd be willing to bet that the Democrat leadership is keeping their collective mouth shut on how worried they are for the November congressional elections.

Publius II


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