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Poll: U.S. voters turning against own members of Congress

Republicans fared worse than Democrats in a new poll that found 51 percent of people in the United States don't like their own member of Congress.
By Frances Burns   |   Aug. 5, 2014 at 12:57 PM   |   Comments

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WASHINGTON, Aug. 5 (UPI) -- More than half of U.S. voters disapprove of the performance of their own congressional representative, a record high for the ABC/Washington Post poll.

The poll, released Tuesday, shows that 51 percent of people gave their representative low marks; the highest disapproval rating in 25 years of polling and the first time the number has broken the 50 percent barrier. Historically, respondents tend to disapprove of Congress as a whole while liking their own representatives.

Only 41 percent of the respondents to the poll approved of their representatives' performance, a slight dip from the 43 percent seen last October and a new low.

Respondents were more favorable to Democrats, with 49 percent overall saying they approve of their performance. Only 35 percent said the same about Republicans.

In the past, voter dissatisfaction has meant more incumbents losing their seats, the Post said. But that doesn't mean Democrats have a good shot at gaining control of Congress.

In 2010, when only 51 percent approved of their congressional representative, 85 percent of incumbents retained their seats.

While 85 percent of Democratic respondents and 79 percent of Republicans approved of their own party, independents tended to dislike both, with Republicans coming in slightly behind Democrats. Among that group, 61 percent disapproved of Republicans while 31 percent approved while the split for Democrats was 50-41.

A random sample off 1,029 adults were interviewed between July 30 and Aug. 3. The margin of error is 3.5 percentage points.

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