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Rock bottom: Congress gets the lowest approval ratings in Gallup history

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A moment of dread, disquiet and despondency? This must be it: “Americans’ approval of the way Congress is handling its job has dropped to 9 percent, the lowest in Gallup’s 39-year history of asking the question,” reports Frank Newport, director at the pollster.

These results are from a Gallup poll conducted Nov. 7-10.

Congress approval fell to 11 percent in October during the government shutdown - which appears to have inflicted lasting damage.”Americans’ views of Congress have not recovered, but instead have edged lower,” Mr. Newport says.

“Public displeasure with Congress is equally rampant across political groups, with Republicans (9 percent), independents (8 percent), and Democrats (10 percent) giving the institution similarly low approval ratings.”

Things have never been particularly happy between the public and lawmakers, however. Congress, has an average approval rating of 33 percent since 1974. The best rating - 56 percent - appeared in 2001, “the rally effect after the 9/11 terrorist attacks,” Mr. Newport says.

Since the 2008 financial crisis, approval has been low, with the exception of the few months after Obama’s first inauguration in 2009.

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