The More Americans Know About Congress, the More they Hate it

Gallup: Americans hold the U.S. Congress in very low esteem, with 49% rating the way Congress is handling its job as poor or bad and 15% rating it as excellent or good. But ratings of Congress are even worse among those who know the most about America’s legislative body. Among those who answer four or five questions correctly about how Congress works and who runs it, 66% rate Congress as poor or bad, and 7% rate it as excellent or good.

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“Highly educated Americans are much more knowledgeable than those with less education to have negative opinions of Congress. Also, Americans aged 30 and older are somewhat more knowledgeable and more negative toward Congress than those who are younger. There is little significant difference between knowledge and partisanship, showing that this is not a situation driven by traditional politics.”

“The fact that the most knowledgeable about Congress are the most critical has important implications for anyone focused on attempting to narrow the chasm that currently divides Americans and the people elected to represent them. It appears that Congress cannot merely talk its way out of its low ratings, but rather will need to actually perform better to win back public support among those who are paying the closest attention.”