64% Say Government has too much money and power
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of U.S. Adults shows that 64% think the government has too much power and money while just nine percent (9%) says it has too little of both. Nineteen percent (19%) think the government has about the right amount of power and money.
The number of adults that believes the government holds too much power and money is up slightly from 61% a year ago and 60% in April 2009.
Only 10% believe the federal government spends taxpayers’ money wisely and fairly, down six points from last year. Seventy-eight percent (78%) disagree and say the government does not spend money from taxpayers the way it should while 12% are undecided.
84% say country heading in wrong direction
Sixteen percent (16%) of Likely U.S. Voters now say the country is heading in the right direction, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey taken the week ending Sunday, October 23.
The latest finding is up a point from a week ago, but is down a point from a month ago and 16 points from this time last year.
Since the third week in July, the number of voters who are confident in the nation’s current course has resembled levels measured in the final months of the Bush administration, with voter confidence remaining in the narrow range of 14% to 19%.
When President Obama assumed office in January 2009, optimism rose to 27% and climbed to the low to mid 30s peaking at 40% in early May of that year. In 2010, confidence steadily decreased and hasn’t topped 30% since February 2011.
Seventy-seven percent (77%) of voters say the country is heading down the wrong track, down a point from last week. Since January 2009, voter pessimism has ranged from a low of 57% to a high of 80%. This time last year, 64% said the United States was heading down the wrong path.
Congressional Favorability Ratings
While Congress’ overall job approval continues to hover around record lows, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi remains the most unpopular Congressional leader.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 63% of Likely Voters have at least a somewhat unfavorable opinion of Pelosi, just below her worst rating ever (64%) measured in July and February.
For House Speaker John Boehner, 38% have a favorable opinion of him while 46% view him unfavorably. That includes nine percent (9%) who have a Very Favorable view of the Ohio Republican and 22% who have a Very Unfavorable impression of him. These findings show little change from last month. When Boehner took the reins as speaker from Pelosi, he enjoyed a 45% favorable rating and a 34% unfavorable rating.
Just 21% of voters have a favorable opinion of House Majority Leader Harry Reid, matching his all-time low first measured in late May. Fifty-seven percent (57%) view Reid unfavorably. These figures include eight percent (8%) who have a Very Favorable impression of the Nevada Democrat and 36% who share a Very Unfavorable view of him.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell earns favorable reviews from 32% of voters and unfavorable marks from 40%. These figures include six percent (6%) who have a Very Favorable impression of McConnell and 20% who have a Very Unfavorable view of him. But nearly one-third (28%) don’t know enough about him to offer an opinion, as has been the case for years now.
Eighty-two percent (82%) of voters now say members of Congress are more interested in their own careers than helping people. That matches the highest level measured since regular tracking began in November 2006 but is generally consistent with findings since the spring. Nine percent (9%) feel members of Congress are more interested in helping people.
And 71% of Likely U.S. Voters favor establishing term limits for all members of Congress. Just 14% oppose setting such limits, and 15% are undecided about them.
The President and the Economy
Perceptions of President Obama’s handling of the economy – the most important issue on voters’ minds – have fallen to a new low.
The latest national telephone survey finds that 28% of Likely Voters believe the president is doing a good or excellent job on the economy. While this finding has been hovered around 30% since early August, it’s the lowest level measured of Obama’s presidency.
Gallup Polls show President Barack Obama's job approval rating has shown modest improvement in the past week. His latest rating, based on Oct. 24-26 Gallup Daily tracking is 43%, and his approval has been at or above 42% in each of the last seven days. In the prior two weeks, his averages were generally at or below 40%.
The Second Amendment
Forty-seven percent of American adults currently report that they have a gun in their home or elsewhere on their property. This is up from 41% a year ago and is the highest Gallup has recorded since 1993, albeit marginally above the 44% and 45% highs seen during that period.
Republicans (including independents that lean Republican) are more likely than Democrats (including Democratic leaners) to say they have a gun in their household: 55% to 40%. While sizable, this partisan gap is narrower than that seen in recent years, as Democrats' self-reported gun ownership spiked to 40% this year.
Most of us favor the adherence to the second amendment with private gun ownership. A record-low 26% of Americans favor a legal ban on the possession of handguns in the United States other than by police and other authorized people. When Gallup first asked Americans this question in 1959, 60% favored banning handguns. But since 1975, the majority of Americans have opposed such a measure, with opposition around 70% in recent years.
A solid majority of the U.S. public, 73%, believes the Second Amendment to the Constitution guarantees the rights of Americans to own guns.