With the Senate up for grabs in November’s midterms, a new poll finds that only 4 in 10 say it matters a "great deal" to them which party controls Congress.

The Gallup poll finds that 40 percent of the public say party control of Congress matters greatly to them. Republicans and Democrats who say they care a great deal are both at 43 percent.


Enthusiasm has fallen sharply from 2010, when Tea Party opposition to President Obama helped drive major Republican gains. That year, a much-higher figure — 61 percent of Republicans — cared a great deal, along with 45 percent of Democrats and 49 percent of the public as a whole.

The 40 percent level this year is the same as it was in 2002, when Republicans picked up seats in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks.

Concern about party-control could also be linked to how much voters know about Congress. The poll shows that many people do not know which party controls each chamber.

About half can correctly identify which party controls one of the chambers: 49 percent correctly say Democrats control the Senate and 51 percent say Republicans control the House. 

Only 36 percent know the majority in both chambers, though that is slightly higher, at 41 percent, among registered voters.