Poll: Americans worried on economy, dissatisfied with country's direction

The survey comes as Washington officials continue to search for areas of common ground as they try to put a spark into the economy. The Senate last week passed measures giving tax incentives to businesses that hire veterans and repealing a government withholding provision that many businesses found onerous.

The president had included proposals in those areas in his $447 billion jobs package, and the House is expected to take up the measures this week.

With less than a year to go until the 2012 presidential election, Gallup also reported that American satisfaction with the country’s direction had remained between 11 percent and 13 percent since August.

That’s roughly three times worse than the 36 percent who were generally satisfied in August 2009, the high-water mark during the Obama administration. Gallup’s lowest ever finding on that question, 7 percent, came in October 2008, shortly after the fiscal crisis broke out.