Saturday, April 19, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Who Are These People?

A new Washington Post/ABC-News poll says 14% of Americans approve of the job Congress is doing. Who are these people?

Who Are These People?

It is not surprising that a new Washington Post/ABC-News poll released this week finds only 14 percent of Americans approve of the job Congress is doing.

What's surprising is 14 percent of Americans approve of the job Congress is doing.

Who are these people?

Who could possibly think the do-nothing, locked-in-partisanship, bleating, bloviating band of over-perked pols that shape the policy of the nation is doing anything worthy of public approval?

Who thinks the 535 people elected to represent the best interests of all citizens are actually doing so and not just living in a bubble of benefits disconnected from the harsh economy facing almost everyone else?

Who does not see that, collectively, the Congress performs with the same levels of sagacity, direction and accountability as a herd of feral cats?

I have some thoughts. I'm thinking the 14 percent is made up mostly of the super-rich and the super-stupid.

According to the website financialsamurai.com, using data from the IRS, the top 1 percent of wage-earners in America include 1.3 million taxpayers making at least $380,354 a-year.

I figure this group is over-represented in the Post/ABC poll.

I mean, if I was in that financial strata I'm pretty sure my mood would be such that I'd approve of just about anything. Even Congress.

(Which is why it'll never pass that tax-the-millionaires thing.)

My next category of suspect Congressional support includes the producers and parents involved in the TLC cable network child beauty pageant reality show, "Toddlers and Tiaras." Have you seen this thing? Based on the premise and participants, this has to be an incubator for the kind of thinking that thinks Congress is performing well.

Finally, the poll must have polled every member of Congress and the thousands upon thousands of its staff members in Washington and home districts. Most of them must think they're doing a fine job. I figure that's the 3 percent that the poll says "strongly approve" of lawmakers' performance. WHO else would?

Democrats run the Senate and Republicans run the House so there's bipartisan loathing, and rightly so. I just wish pollsters would release IDs of the 3 percent or the whole 14 percent. Interviews with those folks would make for a fun reality show, maybe even a competitve one -- "American Idiot."

GRRR.

 

 

 

John Baer Daily News Political Columnist
About this blog
John Baer has been covering politics and government for the Daily News since 1987. The National Journal in 2002 called Baer one of the country's top 10 political journalists outside Washington, saying Baer has, "the ability to take the skin off a politician without making it hurt too much." E-mail John at baerj@phillynews.com.

John is the author of the book "On The Front Lines of Pennsylvania Politics: Twenty-Five Years of Keystone Reporting" (The History Press, 2012). Reach John at baerj@phillynews.com.

John Baer Daily News Political Columnist
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