Americans aren’t too impressed with the performance of their government.
A fresh poll by NBC News and the Wall Street Journal reveals how voters grade elected officials: a C-minus, or a 2.1 GPA. Individual politicians and parties scored even lower.
Approval for Congress’s job performance reached an all-time low since NBC and the WSJbegan polling in 1995. Barely 40 percent think President Obama is doing a good job, and the numbers only get worse from there. Only one in four Americans believe the country “is on the right track.”
One number might scare incumbents up for re-election next month:
Fifty-five percent of respondents say they would vote every member of Congress out of office if they could.
Most people prefer a new face to a political veteran. Recent Gallup polls concur that Americans are increasingly fed-up with Congress and ready for a shake-up.
The poll results are astonishing, but talk is cheap. As our grandmothers used to say, “Actions speak louder than words.” And voters repeatedly keep 80 percent of incumbents in office. Why?
The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza thinks it’s time to put some muscle behind the complaints. “The government we have is the government we deserve — and not in a good way,” he wrote in a piece on the poll numbers. In other words, if you don’t like what you get, then vote differently.
Gallup’s Frank Newport thinks there’s something deeper going on: “the average American perceives that systems and procedures in Washington need to be changed in fundamental ways that transcend the particular group of people who are elected to serve in Congress at any given time.”