Chart of the Day: US Congress Approval Rating

The latest Gallup poll shows the approval rating for Congress at a record low 10%. 86% disapprove.

The new-low 10% approval rating is based on a Gallup survey conducted Feb. 2-5, about two weeks after President Obama’s 2012 State of the Union address and the reconvening of the U.S. House and Senate.

Congressional approval averaged 17% for all of 2011. The highest reading last year was 24% in May. More broadly, Gallup’s highest approval rating for Congress is 84% in October 2001, a month after the terrorist attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C.

Gallup writes that it has been difficult to pinpoint exactly why the ratings have fallen as no single activity in the last year stands out in this regard. Moreover, according to a separate Gallup poll, the President has seen his approval rating for the economy increase somewhat. So Congress’ poor approval rating cannot be economy-related. Also, notice the marked 2009 lift and decline in approval for Congress among Democrats.

If the divergence between Obama’s numbers and Congress’ continues, I see it as favoring Barack Obama in the election in November.

Source: Congress’ Job Approval at New Low of 10% – Gallup


Edward Harrison is the founder of Credit Writedowns and a former career diplomat, investment banker and technology executive with over twenty five years of business experience. He has also been a regular economic and financial commentator on BBC World News, CNBC Television, Business News Network, CBC, Fox Television and RT Television. He speaks six languages and reads another five, skills he uses to provide a more global perspective. Edward holds an MBA in Finance from Columbia University and a BA in Economics from Dartmouth College.


  1. David Lazarus says:

    With the exception of a few democrats, Kucinich and Frankel whom I suspect have far higher ratings. The ratings of the rest are probably even lower individually.

  2. Patrick M says:

    Isn’t is obvious? Republicans hate the Democrat Senate for not being fiscally irresponsible and not passing a budget like the House has, Democrats hates the Republican House for opposing Obama and the Democrats, and independents hate them all for bickering.
    Divided Governmnet is less dangerous than the partisan extremism of one party rule, like we got out of the Democrats 2 years prior, but its not pretty.