A wide margin of voters said in a new poll on Tuesday that they prefer newcomers to incumbent candidates in this fall's elections.
Sixty percent of voters — and 69 percent of self-described independents — said they would rather vote for a candidate who has never before served in Congress.
Thirty-two percent of all registered voters told the Gallup Poll that they would prefer a candidate who has already served in Congress, underscoring a growing anti-incumbent streak in elections this year so far.
Voters in a dozen states will head to the polls Tuesday in primary elections across the country. In one race, anti-incumbent sentiment could threaten to unseat another sitting member of Congress, Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D).
Lincoln is one of a handful of senators who have been forced to fend off a primary challenge this year, with liberal and labor groups propelling Arkansas Lt. Gov. Bill Halter (D) in his primary challenge. Earlier this year, primary challengers also unseated Sens. Bob Bennett (R-Utah) and Arlen Specter (D-Pa.) in their renomination efforts.
But while 63 percent of voters said that most members of Congress don't deserve reelection, they still rate their own representatives highly; 50 percent of voters said their representative deserves reelection, as opposed to 40 percent who said they don't.
Still, those numbers are some of the worst for sitting members of Congress since the early 1990s, according to Gallup tracking over the years.
The poll, conducted May 24-25, has a 4 percent margin of error.