Meltdown: For first time, most Americans believe their own rep doesn’t deserve reelection

posted at 7:28 pm on August 9, 2011 by Allahpundit

Note well: It’s a poll of adults, not a poll of voters, so it’s no predictor of how next year’s vote will shake out. But I want you to see it anyway because it corroborates other recent polls showing a historic collapse of Congress’s standing among the public. Never in modern times, through the financial crisis, the Iraq war, or Clinton’s scandals and impeachment, have American adults been quite this disgusted with their reps. It’s come to this:

Only 41 percent of people questioned say the lawmaker in their district in the U.S. House of Representatives deserves to be re-elected – the first time ever in CNN polling that that figure has dropped below 50 percent. Forty-nine percent say their representative doesn’t deserve to be re-elected in 2012. And with ten percent unsure, it’s the first time that a majority has indicated that they would boot their representative out of office if they had the chance today.

“That 41 percent, in the polling world, is an amazing figure. Throughout the past two decades, in good times and bad, Americans have always liked their own member of Congress despite abysmal ratings for Congress in general,” says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. “Now anti-incumbent sentiment is so strong that most Americans are no longer willing to give their own representative the benefit of the doubt. If that holds up, it could be an early warning of an electorate that is angrier than any time in living memory.”

As for all members of Congress, the poll indicates only a quarter of the public says most members of Congress deserve to be re-elected.

Among registered voters, the split is slightly better but still underwater at 45/48. Gallup polled this same question today and found the split among registered voters at 54/34, which is slightly better than the numbers last fall before the midterms. But there’s a new low lurking in their data too. When you ask whether most members of Congress should be reelected, the graph falls off a cliff:

That’s fully seven points lower than the previous record low, and that’s why Charlie Cook thinks next year “we could very well see a situation where voters just start throwing incumbents out of windows.” Is it true that the public’s blaming all incumbents regardless of party, though? Sort of: In CNN’s poll, both parties are waaaay underwater when registered voters are asked whether most members of that party deserve reelection. For Democratic representatives, though, the split is 39/57, which is actually a few points better than where they were before the midterm bloodbath last year (36/60). For Republican representatives, the split is … 31/65, which is worse than both the Democrats’ numbers last year and the GOP’s own numbers before the 2006 and 2008 wipeouts. At 33/59, the GOP’s favorable rating is also lower than it’s been in five years. And of course the tea party’s affected too:

Pew has a new poll out today on the tea party as well. Note the line on independents. Granted, it’s still a roughly even split, but it wasn’t so even just six months ago:

Ace says he’s discounting the CNN poll because, after all, the whole point of the tea party is to offer tough medicine. When you go around telling people plain truths about the welfare state being unsustainable, don’t be surprised if they don’t hug you for it. The only problem with that theory: The recent polls on the debt-ceiling deal show that somewhere between 70 and 80 percent of the public either likes the amount of spending cuts in the deal or thinks they should have gone further. The public also likes the balanced-budget amendment that House tea partiers were pounding the table for, so there’s no obvious substantive reason why they’d punish the tea party in polls now. So why the backlash, then? Presumably it’s because of the tactics. Maybe they didn’t like the brinksmanship with the economy in the middle of a hellishly slow “recovery.” The Democrats’ strategy, led by President Present, is to sit back and let the tea party bleed some of its popularity on an aggressive “tough choices” agenda and the occasional serendipitous (for Democrats) political overreach. That way, when the real battle finally begins over entitlements, independents will be more suspicious of the tea-party brand than they were before. It’s a gutless, cynical, irresponsible strategy given the magnitude of our spending problem, but it’s not stupid. It may have worked to some extent here.

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Why the backlash, then? Presumably it’s because of the tactics MSM.

Fixed it for ya, AP.

BacaDog on August 9, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Mmmmmm, tasty Beltway Turnover! :)

ThePrez on August 9, 2011 at 7:31 PM

Whatever. If people are so stupid that will elect Democrats in 2012 then they absolutely deserve what will happen. I say sit back and enjoy the suck.

WarEagle01 on August 9, 2011 at 7:31 PM

OK, so the best plan in the eyes of the American people is to have no plan…..

sandee on August 9, 2011 at 7:32 PM

Randy Neugebauer is doing a good job and listens to his constituents(like me)+he voted against the debt-ceiling compromise. Lubbock county is extremely conservative so Congressman Neugebauer should have an easy ride toward election.

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 7:35 PM

Malign the Tea Party all they want, the facts on the ground trump any sort of political hackery the leftie trash create.

The party is over. Over. The only thing left to do is deal with the massive clean up of the chicken wings, beer cans, spilled chili, and vomit piles.

Bishop on August 9, 2011 at 7:36 PM

I’d kind of want to see that poll done on a district-by-district basis before I try to take anything from that result.

Russ on August 9, 2011 at 7:36 PM

So how the hell do people like Pelosi, Waters, Frank, and Reid continue to get re-elected cycle after cycle?

Are they reelected simply because “they’re a freaking idiot, but their OUR freaking idiot”?

GarandFan on August 9, 2011 at 7:37 PM

So how the hell do people like Pelosi, Waters, Frank, and Reid continue to get re-elected cycle after cycle?

Are they reelected simply because “they’re a freaking idiot, but their OUR freaking idiot”?

GarandFan

Might have something to do with unions and dead people voting.

honsy on August 9, 2011 at 7:40 PM

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 7:35 PM

My rep, Tim Johnson, voted against the debt deal scam and has been pretty good overall. He does occasionally make the mistake of trying to appease the lefties here (The U of I is 12 miles from me–Champaign-Urbana.) The left bites him in the butt every time anyway. I think he is finally starting to figure that out. Champaign is somewhat GOP, but RINOs primarily rule there. The People’s Republic of Urbana is full-blown Marxist.

predator on August 9, 2011 at 7:42 PM

I remember the polls were favorable to democrats up until less than a week before the 2010 midterms. Something like: “A few losses are cusomary for the ruling party in a midterm, but the dems will retain both houses – maybe even gain a couple of seats in the senate.”

I wouldn’t want to be a democrat senator running for reelection in 2012.

jaime on August 9, 2011 at 7:43 PM

Yeah, put me in that category. Of course, my rep and Senators are D’s, so that’s hardly a surprise.

Count to 10 on August 9, 2011 at 7:44 PM

I may get canned for this but all I can is
ABOUT FUCKEN TIME !!!!
WAKE UP AMERICA No one in congress has the TAX PAYERS back. We are on our own.

ColdWarrior57 on August 9, 2011 at 7:45 PM

jaime on August 9, 2011 at 7:43 PM

I remember Pelosi and co stating they would keep the House, but I remember most polls pointed to huge Dem losses.

El_Terrible on August 9, 2011 at 7:46 PM

It’s. About. Time.

Sporty1946 on August 9, 2011 at 7:47 PM

Just like the Kennedy label, I believe most people go to the polls, see a name that is recognizable, vote for that person.
Me, on the other hand, simply will not vote in certain categories unless I’ve done my homework. I don’t think this exercise works for the majority.

betsyz on August 9, 2011 at 7:47 PM

I’m in a blue area in California; the “registered voter” statistics don’t apply in my case.

What are the numbers when you factor in illegal aliens and other fraudulent votes?

malclave on August 9, 2011 at 7:48 PM

predator on August 9, 2011 at 7:42 PM

Was your district affected by the redistricting?
My old district(2) will soon be reaching into Crete and Monee.
I am sooo glad we escaped that cesspool!

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 7:50 PM

When you set up to be unpopular, you’d be unpopular. It really wouldn’t hurt at all if there are a least a modicum of effort into public relations.

Apologetic California on August 9, 2011 at 7:51 PM

CNN, Gallup, Pew! hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

capejasmine on August 9, 2011 at 7:51 PM

predator on August 9, 2011 at 7:42 PM

Btw: Lubbock County is the most conservative county in one of the reddest states in the nation
Neugebauer isn’t going anywhere unless he chooses to.

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 7:52 PM

So by this logic President Romney will face a Democratic Congress? McCain must be kicking himself.

Seth Halpern on August 9, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Hey Ed and Allah,

I have nothing against doing things to make more money, like have ads on the website. However, these ads that autoplay every time a pages is refreshed is really annoying and some of the ones that aren’t made properly seem to make my system freeze up on a more frequent basis. Is there anything you can do?

Sporty1946 on August 9, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Most of the polls are liberal propaganda tools. They can make anything look how they want it to look. A CNN poll has to be at or near the fecal matter level.

volsense on August 9, 2011 at 7:54 PM

Maybe they didn’t like the brinksmanship with the economy in the middle of a hellishly slow “recovery.”

perhaps!

sesquipedalian on August 9, 2011 at 7:56 PM

…Charlie Cook thinks next year “we could very well see a situation where voters just start throwing incumbents out of windows.”

Works for me.

tru2tx on August 9, 2011 at 7:56 PM

I have nothing against doing things to make more money, like have ads on the website. However, these ads that autoplay every time a pages is refreshed is really annoying and some of the ones that aren’t made properly seem to make my system freeze up on a more frequent basis. Is there anything you can do?

Sporty1946 on August 9, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Firefox.
Adblock.

Count to 10 on August 9, 2011 at 7:57 PM

I think that more people need to learn the meaning of the word ‘unsustainable’.

This is a start.

hillbillyjim on August 9, 2011 at 7:57 PM

Was your district affected by the redistricting?
annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 7:50 PM

But of course! Two established GOPers will now have to vie for the same seat plus face challenges from the Dims. I don’t remember exactly the communities brought into the new district, but it is definitely drawn to eliminate one Repub or the other, if not both.

We need a new state called South Illinois with a northern border at I-80.

predator on August 9, 2011 at 7:58 PM

Sporty1946 on August 9, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Adblock is free and it works great.

Bugler on August 9, 2011 at 7:58 PM

Any republican who voted for that debt ceiling should be thrown out.

Doesn’t even matter if it’s a general election at this point.

We’re NOT voting for people like Allen West any longer.

Spathi on August 9, 2011 at 7:59 PM

What is difference between the relationship of whores and their pimp and between journlists and their editor? There is no difference. They do and say what their editor/pimp tells them to do. That is the definition of a poll.

volsense on August 9, 2011 at 7:59 PM

Sporty1946 on August 9, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Install Firefox

And then Install the Adblock Plus add on.

I’ve also heard that Google Chrome can do it too.

El_Terrible on August 9, 2011 at 7:59 PM

I remember most polls pointed to huge Dem losses.

El_Terrible on August 9, 2011 at 7:46 PM

Not until near the end of October, as I recall. I also recall democrats complaining about Rasmussen. They would point to all of the other polls and say Rasmussen was way off, when in fact it was almost all of the other polls that were inaccurate.

I don’t think it was until near the end of October that they all started saying pretty much the same thing.

We can expect a lot of this nonsense from the polling companies until about a week before the 2012 election. SOP.

jaime on August 9, 2011 at 8:00 PM

I have nothing against doing things to make more money, like have ads on the website. However, these ads that autoplay every time a pages is refreshed is really annoying and some of the ones that aren’t made properly seem to make my system freeze up on a more frequent basis. Is there anything you can do?

Sporty1946 on August 9, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Firefox.
Adblock.

Count to 10 on August 9, 2011 at 7:57 PM

+1

visions on August 9, 2011 at 8:00 PM

I’ve also heard that Google Chrome can do it too.

Yes. I use Adblock with Chrome. It’s excellent.

Bugler on August 9, 2011 at 8:01 PM

Ya better watch yourself, AllahP.

They’re liable to “deem and pass” a bill naming you public enemy #1!

I hope that anonymous thingy holds up under Eric the Red’s scrutiny.

hillbillyjim on August 9, 2011 at 8:03 PM

I got Joe “YouLie” Wilson and Jim DeMint, hang tough men.
All HA readers should be so lucky.

Open The Door on August 9, 2011 at 8:05 PM

We’re NOT voting for people like Allen West any longer.

Spathi on August 9, 2011 at 7:59 PM

Who’s this ‘we’?

You got a cockroach in your pocket? (I mean besides the Ronulan)

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 8:06 PM

They can keep trying to shut down the Tea Party but it is not hard to repudiate the meme. The people around me at work, many of them voted for Obama, are sick of him and cannot believe this is what they got! Now, I don’t give them the old “I told you so!” but I do say better late than never, glad to have you aboard. These same people are not buying the TP terrorist meme, at all.

bluemarlin on August 9, 2011 at 8:06 PM

predator on August 9, 2011 at 7:58 PM

There are quite a few ex-Illinoisans in Hub City.
Join us!

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 8:08 PM

It’s obvious that the Tea Party candidates did exactly what they were elected to do so they should be safe seats. If they kick out all the rest they’ll just replace them with similar furniture and the status quo will maintained. The normal state of nature is that everything regresses towards the mean so the more they change the more they stay the same. This government is a laughable screwed up mess.

rplat on August 9, 2011 at 8:08 PM

There are quite a few ex-Illinoisans in Hub City.
Join us!

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 8:08 PM

Believe me, I’d love to. But I can’t afford to leave the gig (it’s a pretty good one).

predator on August 9, 2011 at 8:09 PM

Rand Paul at Damon Thayer 2012 Re-election kickoff in Kentucky today

Must watch speech.

No one can disagree with what he said.

Spathi on August 9, 2011 at 8:15 PM

I think if we got it out to the public, instead of term limits, we should go for votes of confidence. A vote of Confidence would be fore the entire House or the Entire Senate. Have a vote once every 4 years. Add it to the Constitution.

Question one; The House of Representatives is intended to represent the people, are the members of the House of Representatives representing “We the People”? With a majority vote of no, all current members of the House are prevented from running for any federal office other than president in the next election cycle. The house may not convene outside of national emergency until after the election.

Question two, The Senate is intended to be a check on the federal government from quickly making rash changes in the government that have not been well thought out and is intended to represent the States as a whole, preventing the federal government from taking the rights of the states for itself, are the members of the Senate representing the states while deliberating properly all laws that come before it? A majority vote of no brings all Senate seats up for election and no current member may run for federal office other than President until after the election. Seats that would not normally be up for vote in the cycle would be considered special elections to complete the current term of the seat.
After each Session of the Supreme court, the states shall give each federal judge in the nation a vote of confidence. A vote of no confidence ends that Judges tenure and that judge will be ineligible for placement on any federal judgeship for life. In cases of supreme court judges being terminated in this process, all decisions that loss of that judge or group of judges would change the outcome of shall be placed back onto the docket of the Supreme court for a review.

I bet we could get 3/4 of the states and most of the population to vote for this kind of change.

astonerii on August 9, 2011 at 8:18 PM

The muddle is probably due to several things:

1) Everyone likes the idea of cutting spending, so long as is not their own. People like the “idea” of spending cuts, and ~2 Trillion sounds like “alot” (nevermind that the cuts will be backloaded, or that they are cuts to scheduled spending increases)

2) There probably is some public support for tax hikes, so long as they fall on someone else, i.e “Millionaires and Billionaires”. (Class warfare carries a sense of schadenfreude when so many people are struggling and beats out economic theory on this one)

3) Its easy for the politically lazy to blame everyone when the economy stays depressed and there is some measure of split government. These people just want Congress to get together, act “like adults” and make what appears to be “common sense” tradeoffs. (Note that these compromises don’t have to make sense from a policy perspective. To the politically lazy, the fact that both adversaries went in and negotiated and came out with a deal is a back of an envelope way of saying “the compromise is a middle of the road course”). Due to how this deal went down, it looks to many as if the GOP won, which ironically helps the Democrats paint milquetoast deal as “radical”.

4) There is a growing sense of anger at economic circumstances, and people really don’t know who or what to blame, so they blame everyone.

Revenant on August 9, 2011 at 8:21 PM

Ron Paul’s Great Grandson on August 9, 2011 at 8:15 PM

Thread Hijack Alert.

Del Dolemonte on August 9, 2011 at 8:23 PM

Are we witnessing something that really IS historic this time?

Like the whigs or something?

I’d be happy with a Tea and socialist parties…

At least we could call a spade a spade, so to speak.

golfmann on August 9, 2011 at 8:55 PM

El_Terrible on August 9, 2011 at 7:59 PM

Thanks for the info. Do you know if I can use either on a Mac because that is the system it keeps happening on.

Sporty1946 on August 9, 2011 at 9:01 PM

Put me on the record for standing firmly behind Cathy McMorris Rodgers.

franksalterego on August 9, 2011 at 9:16 PM

Ron Paul’s Great Grandson on August 9, 2011 at 8:15 PM

Thread Hijack Alert.

Del Dolemonte on August 9, 2011 at 8:23 PM

LoL!

annoyinglittletwerp on August 9, 2011 at 9:28 PM

Allah: I don’t think that re-elect percent for “my congressman” holds any water at all. When it comes to House races, you have to look at each one individually, since each one is fairly localized. Plus, there are 435 seats total in the House. How many people are usually in a poll? 1,000? So at best they may have sampled 2 people in each congressional district in the country on this question. I don’t think that’s very representative. If they had asked 100 people in in each district in the United States and gotten that result, then perhaps this would be significant.

Mayhem on August 9, 2011 at 10:04 PM

Turnover the Congress? OK… start with the US Senate in 2012… and the White House, too!!

Khun Joe on August 9, 2011 at 10:09 PM

We need a new state called South Illinois with a northern border at I-80.

predator on August 9, 2011 at 7:58 PM

Yes…and this highlights the main problem we face. The modern challenge is “urban vs.” well, America. We’re seriously outvoted by the major urban centers. “States” that made sense in 1812 or 1848 or 1866 or 1908 aren’t cohesive in 2011/2012.
NY state should divest itself of NYC, New England should become two states (coastal/inland) instead of 10, California should be at least three states…

Arggh! It was a lot easier when it was just “North vs. South”…the conflicts are now intermingled and interially-imbedded.

Who is John Galt on August 9, 2011 at 11:30 PM

interially-imbedded.

Who is John Galt on August 9, 2011 at 11:30 PM

Uh, Internally-imbedded.

Who is John Galt on August 9, 2011 at 11:41 PM

Dusting off my old 9/12 sign: Recycle congress. Save the Planet Constitution

Christian Conservative on August 9, 2011 at 11:52 PM

Remain mindful of the bumper sticker:

“Politicians and diapers should be changed for the same reason.”

viking01 on August 10, 2011 at 7:36 AM

I’d just like for mine to retire. He’s the oldest member of either house, a Democrat who switched parties and became a Republican in 2004, in part because he was a friend of President Bush. Ralph Hall is a nice guy, but he’s 88, and he’s been in the House since 1981.

Ward Cleaver on August 10, 2011 at 8:48 AM

I believe in term limits because I accept that power corrupts.

SKYFOX on August 10, 2011 at 8:52 AM

It would be interesting to find out how many first term Congressmen might be on a list for not being considered for reelection.

GFW on August 10, 2011 at 9:14 AM

When we have congress people that think an island will flop over if we put troops ashore and another that thinks our astronauts were on a mars mission plus others that hide behind their exemption of the law I think it’s time to clean out the Congress, both houses. They were all deaf when we screamed we didn’t want the Health Care Bill and the Speaker of The House said we needed to pass it to find out what was in it, it stands to reason that something is very wrong and I’m quite shocked to think that the MSM is shocked that we would not vote our representatives back in office. Where have you been for the last 8 or more years?

mixplix on August 10, 2011 at 4:41 PM