They Hate Congress, But Like Their Congressman

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

They Hate Congress, But Like Their Congressman

President Bush's political fortunes don't seem to be improving. In fact, his approval rating has dropped in the latest ABC News-Washington Post poll to its lowest level since his presidency began. And Congress' approval ratings? Well, on the one hand:
With less than seven months remaining before the midterm elections, Bush's political troubles already appear to be casting a long shadow over them. Barely a third of registered voters, 35 percent, approve of the way the Republican-held Congress is doing its job -- the lowest level of support in nine years.
On the other hand:
This grim news for the GOP is offset somewhat by the finding that 59 percent of voters still say they approve of their own representative.
This kind of gap is not unusual in congressional polls: people hate Congress, but are fairly fond of their own member of Congress. Still, it's a sign of why so many members of Congress are able to get away with poor attendance, financial shenanigans and/or other misdeeds.

At some point, American voters have to blame themselves. Congress is comprised of hundreds of men and women who are shockingly out of touch with ordinary people, are largely unaware of critical details of the bills they vote on, and spend endless hours raising money for re-election. No, this isn't true of every single member. But it is true of most of them.

So why are so many Americans convinced that their members of Congress are behaving admirably?

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