Americans' confidence in Congress dropped to a mere 10% this week, the lowest level not only for Congress, but for any institution on record--ever.
The Gallup Poll revealed that Americans ranked Congress last on a list of societal institutions four years in a row. They have the most hope in the military, with a rating of 76%. The list also includes banks, television news, police, church, the U.S. Supreme Court, and the criminal justice system.
Americans' positive feelings toward Congress was higher in the mid-1980s and in the early 2000s. The high point came in 1973, at 42%.
There was no partisan divide on disdain for Congress. Democrats, Republicans, and independents had equal disapproval of the legislative body in the poll.
President Obama has faced recent accusations of government outreach, defending his administration on several fronts, including the secret seizure of journalists' and other citizens' phone records. But he has also repeatedly blamed Congress for a failure to compromise to move legislation, such as gun control, student loan interest rates, and a federal budget, forward.
A Gallup Poll from earlier this month found that 48% of Americans approve of the way Obama is handling his job as president, and 45% disapproved.