If you need a graphic representation of how unhappy the American public is, take a look at the latest Gallup Poll results from their annual governance survey. Here are Gallup’s key findings:
- 82% of Americans disapprove of the way Congress is handling its job.
- 69% say they have little or no confidence in the legislative branch of government, an all-time high and up from 63% in 2010.
- 57% have little or no confidence in the federal government to solve domestic problems, exceeding the previous high of 53% recorded in 2010 and well exceeding the 43% who have little or no confidence in the government to solve international problems.
- 53% have little or no confidence in the men and women who seek or hold elected office.
- Americans believe, on average, that the federal government wastes 51 cents of every tax dollar, similar to a year ago, but up significantly from 46 cents a decade ago and from an average 43 cents three decades ago.
- 49% of Americans believe the federal government has become so large and powerful that it poses an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens. In 2003, less than a third (30%) believed this.
The whole article is eye-opening. People were not happy with the government after Watergate, but they are far more disgusted now. Gallup has a nice table in response to the question, “On the whole, would you say you are satisfied or dissatisfied with the way the nation is being governed?”
If 81% of Americans—majorities of both political parties—are dissatisfied, that means 19% are happy with how things are going. Has anyone actually met one of the 19%?