Rasmussen has a poll out that argues against the “people hate Congress but love their own congressman” meme. Essentially, that explanation is beaten out 2-to-1 by “the fix is in:”
…23% believe members of Congress get reelected because they do a good job representing their constituents.
However, 50% believe the high reelection rates result from election rules that are “rigged to benefit members of Congress.” It is worth noting that the word “rigged” is a strong term included in this survey question. The fact that half the nation’s voters believe the election rules are “rigged” is a testament to the high levels of distrust in the country today.
28% aren’t sure, which is probably too high a number for comfort either way.
Rasmussen further breaks down most of its polls these days into Mainstream and Political Classes, and it’s interesting to see how the numbers shift when they look at each sub-group. For example, the Political Class (which makes up 7% of Rasmussen’s survey size*) goes 60/18 the other way; they’re also much more ready to believe (52/10) that politicians are more ethical than used car salesmen, which is a rather funny contrast to the population as a whole (45/28 the other way). This gets reflected over and over and over again in Rasmussen’s polls; the disconnect between the people running the country and the people who have hired the people running the country keeps getting larger and larger.
How much any of this means is, of course, up for grabs. Recent events have shown that our quote-unquote ‘leaders’ haven’t been doing a particularly good job at paying attention; on the other hand, they’ve certainly been getting away with it, up to this point. Between gerrymandering, incumbency protection, and campaign finance ‘reform,’ we’re in a situation where 5% shifts in any one Congress are considered profound. On the gripping hand, we’re starting to get the latest iterations of The Current Situation Will Last Forever scenarios, which are usually harbingers of truly epic electoral spankings.
So keep watching the skies.
*”Most Americans trust the judgment of the public more than political leaders, view the federal government as a special interest group and believe that big business and big government work together against the interests of investors and consumers. Only seven percent (7%) share the opposite view and can be considered part of the Political Class“
Crossposted to Moe Lane.