Congress less popular than colonoscopies, root canals, poll finds

A new poll released Tuesday finds the national favorability of Congress has again slipped into single digits, with American's elected officials now polling lower than painful medical procedures and a certain Canadian rock band.


The survey, from Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, showed Congress with a mere 9 percent favorability rating. By contrast, 85 percent of voters see legislators in a negative way.

Congress didn't fare much better when compared against a wide swath of generally disliked staples of modern life. Asked for their preference between Congress and lice, the microscopic insects prevail 67-19 percent. Ditto colonoscopies (58-31 percent), root canals (65-32 percent), and being stuck in traffic (56-34 percent).

ADVERTISEMENT
Other widely disliked professions also rank well above being a member of Congress. Used car salesmen are favored 57-32 percent over members, while NFL replacement referees earn a 56-29 percent favorability and carnival workers win 39-31 percent. Canadian rock band Nickleback — the punchline of many a joke — also beat out Congress, earning a 39-32 percent advantage.

In fact, the list of subjects polling better than Congress was nearly inexhaustible: Genghis Khan (41-37 percent), Donald Trump (44-42 percent) and cockroaches (45-43 percent) all beat out the House and Senate.

There were a rare few items that Congress managed to exceed in the poll, however. Tabloid stars like Lindsay Lohan (41-45 percent) and the Kardashians (36-49 percent) were both seen less favorably than Congress. K Street also got no love in the survey: 48 percent said they preferred Congress to the people that worked to influence them, while just three in 10 preferred lobbyists.

Former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards, himself once a member of the Senate, fared worse than his colleagues (29-45 percent), as did former Cuban leader Fidel Castro (32-54 percent) and North Korea (26-61 percent). Congress was also favored over more than half of respondents over diseases like gonorrhea and ebola, and eked out polling wins over playground bullies, telemarketers and meth labs.

PPP surveyed 830 voters from Jan. 3 to Jan. 6 via automated telephone interviews. The margin of error was 3.4 percentage points.