Kim Kardashian hosts ICED at Cowboys Dance Hall in Calgary, Jan. 4, 2013. (Mike Ridewood/Getty Images)Good news, Congress! You’re more popular than telemarketers, the deadly ebola virus, gonorrhea, the Kardashians, Lindsay Lohan, communism, disgraced Democratic former Sen. John Edwards, playground bullies and meth labs.
Bad news, Congress! Americans still have a higher opinion of head lice, colonoscopies, cockroaches, Nickelback, the NFL replacement refs, and Donald Trump.
Those are the findings of the latest they-have-way-too-much-fun-over-there survey by Public Policy Polling, which found that the legislative branch’s approval rating is mired at 9 percent. A whopping 85 percent of respondents said they disapproved. The margin of error was plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.
Public Policy Polling pitted Congress against a series of unpleasant things or unpopular people, and the results were not flattering for lawmakers. This will come as no surprise to some of the legislative branch’s critics, including Republican Sen. John McCain, who has said that only blood relatives and paid staffers think Congress is doing a good job.
So: Did respondents have a higher opinion of Congress or root canals? Congress gets drilled, 32 percent to 56 percent. NFL replacement refs? Easy call: Congress loses 29 to 56 percent. Head lice? Congress loses 19 to 67 percent (head-scratcher: the 15 percent who said they weren’t sure). Nickelback? Congress gets rocked 32 to 39 percent. Colonoscopies? Up yours, Congress, 31 to 58 percent. Inside-the-Beltway pundits? Here the Sabbath gasbags and their ilk eke it out 37 to Congress's 34 percent. Donald Trump? You’re (barely) fired, Congress, you get 42 percent, versus the pundits' 44 percent. And cockroaches scurry away with a 45 to 43 percent win.
It’s not all bad news for Congress. Americans rate lawmakers higher than telemarketers (45 to 35 percent); Edwards (45 to 29 percent); the Kardashian clan (49 to 36 percent, with 16 percent not sure); lobbyists (48 to 30 percent), North Korea (61 to 26 percent), ebola (53 to 25 percent with 21 percent apparently not sure whether they prefer their elected representatives over death after bleeding from various bodily orifices); Lindsay Lohan (though the 45 to 41 percent ratio falls well within the margin of error); Fidel Castro (54 to 32 percent); communism (57 to 23 percent); and gonorrhea (53 to 28 percent).
Of course, even though the survey was conducted Jan. 3-6, those ratings most likely reflect views about the 112th Congress, which ended last week. Onward, 113th Congress!