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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The 111th Congress Goes Out With Lowest Approval Ratings In 36 Years

[Update] Help stop the Omnibus bill that Reid is trying to shove through, go here, scroll to the bottom and start dialing please.

As the 111th Congress goes out with the new 112th Congress ready to take the reins in January, Gallup finds that the Democratically controlled Congress has hit the lowest point in job approval in 36 years.

Only 13 percent of Americans approve of the the job performance of the current Congress and 83 percent disapprove.

I bet these numbers would have been lower had Gallup waied just one more week!!

The prior low approval rating for Congress was 14% in July 2008 when the United States was dealing with record-high gas prices and the economy was in recession.

The current results are based on a Dec. 10-12 Gallup poll, conducted as Congress is finishing work on an important lame-duck session. The session has been highlighted by the agreement on taxes forged last week by President Obama and Republicans in Congress. The tax deal preserves the 2001 and 2003 income tax rates for all Americans for two years, revises the estate tax, extends unemployment benefits for the long-term unemployed for a year, and reduces payroll taxes for American workers. It is expected to pass despite vocal opposition from some lawmakers.

Americans are generally more positive than negative toward the deal, but many Democrats in Congress oppose it.

I suppose those numbers could have been lower had Gallup waited a week so the reality of the newly unveiled Senate Omnibus bill could have set into American's minds.

News reports show it is a $1.1 trillion bill with 6,600 earmarks costing approximately $8 billion.

Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas issued a statement in regards to this mess of an omnibus bill:

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, responded in a statement, saying that after neglecting to pass a budget, "today we learn Senate Democrats now want to sandwich them together, totaling almost 2,000 pages, and jam them through in the waning moments of this lame duck session before anyone can read them. This political end-around reveals just how quickly my colleagues across the aisle have already forgotten the voters' message in November."

Though none of the spending bills has passed the Senate, all the individual appropriations bills have been through the full committee process. In an afternoon release, the Appropriations Committee website listed all of the requested earmarks, winnowed into separate categories that go into making up the 12 separate annual spending bills.

If Republicans want to see the projected approval rating jump in January as they take control of the House of Representatives and five additional senators are seated in the Senate, they must block this bill, force Democrats to pass a stop gap bill to keep government running until January or February, then introduce the appropriate spending bills without the massive pork aka earmarks when Republicans control the House.