The most recent polling data from September 2023 puts the approval rating of the United States Congress at 17 percent, reflecting a decrease from the previous month. The September approval level was a record low of the 118th Congress, which began in January 2023.
Congressional approval, particularly over the past few years, has not been high. Americans tend to see Congress as a group of ineffectual politicians who are out of touch with their constituents. The 118th Congress began in 2023 with a rocky start. The Democratic Party maintains control of the Senate, but Republicans took back control of the House of Representatives after the 2022 midterm elections. The House caught media attention from its first days with a contentious fight for the position of Speaker of the House. Representative Kevin McCarthy was eventually sworn in as Speaker after a historic fifteen rounds of voting.
Despite the current Congress having a historic share of women and being the most diverse Congress in American history, very little has been done to improve the opinion of Americans regarding its central lawmaking body.
Ye of little faith
However, Americans tend not to have much confidence in many of the institutions in the United States. Additionally, public confidence in the ability of the Republican and Democratic parties to work together has decreased drastically between 2008 and 2022, with nearly 60 percent of Americans having no confidence the parties can govern in a bipartisan way.