The approval rating for congressional positions fell to 13% in a new national poll following the three-week fight for speaker of the House of Representatives – its lowest rate since 2017.
Lawmakers saw their performance ratings drop four points from 17% in early October, according to the Gallup survey, as Republicans impeached Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Oct. 3, then fielded four different candidates before voting for its replacement 22 days later.
The fight broke out after McCarthy (R-Calif.) passed a so-called “clean” continuing resolution on a bipartisan basis to fund the government at current levels through November 17.
The Gallup poll also shows that Congress last had a 17% approval rating in November 2017, when GOP leaders and rank-and-file members previously clashed over federal spending proposals.
Eight House Republicans led by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Florida) joined 208 Democrats to expel McCarthy from office, sparking a protracted fight among Republican factions for control of their caucus.
Gaetz said he impeached McCarthy because the president used House Democrats to pass a single government spending package rather than splitting the funding into 12 separate appropriations bills.
He also accused the former president of negotiating “a secret side deal” with President Biden and Democrats to secure additional U.S. funding for Ukraine amid its war with Russia.
House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R-La.), House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-Minn.) all received votes nomination but failed to win the gavel.
Jordan was the only candidate to get a floor vote of the trio, but was denied the speakership by at least 20 holdouts in three successive ballots, many of whom expressed lingering frustration over McCarthy’s ouster .
Others refused to support the founding member of the House Freedom Caucus after he said Scalise was unfairly passed over for the role of speaker.
Emmer’s path to the gavel was blocked by former President Donald Trump — who denounced the majority whip as a “RINO,” or Republican in name only — and by hard-liners from the House GOP who disliked the Minnesota moderate’s voting record on social and national security issues.
220 House Republicans voted to elect Conference Vice Chairman Mike Johnson as their next speaker on Wednesday, elevating the little-known Louisianan to the helm of upcoming spending battles with the White House and Senate Democrats .
This work will include passing the remaining seven appropriations bills and negotiating final versions with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and President Biden before government funding runs out this month. next.
Biden, 80, currently has his lowest job approval ratings at Gallup, with only 37% saying they like his performance in office.
The lowest approval rating ever recorded by Congress in the survey (9%) was recorded in November 2013, the month after House Republicans imposed a 16-day shutdown as part of ‘an effort to defund Obamacare.
Among Republican respondents, only 8% approve of the job Congress is doing, a drop of 8 percentage points from August.
Only 10% of Democrats surveyed have a favorable opinion of Congress, a drop of 12 percentage points from September.
The survey was conducted Oct. 2-23 via telephone interviews with U.S. adults in all 50 states and the District of Columbia and has a margin of error of plus or minus four percentage points.
Gallup has been recording opinions on whether Congress approves jobs since 1974, with the rating updating monthly since 2001.
The polling organization also found in its October survey that a plurality of Americans from both major parties cite the federal government as the most important problem facing the country, with 22% of Republicans and 20% of Democrats sharing this opinion.