Fact Tank Oct. 17, 2013

A majority of Americans want their lawmakers to put district wishes over national interests

A majority of the public says members of Congress should base their vote on the wishes of their district over the interest of the country.

U.S. Politics Oct. 15, 2013

More Concern About the Debt Limit, But Skepticism Persists

Public concern over breaching the debt limit deadline has risen only slightly from a week ago. Among those who see no dire economic consequences from missing the Thursday deadline, most say there is no need to raise the debt limit at all.

U.S. Politics Sep. 30, 2013

Public Anger at Government Rises

Overall, 26% of Americans say they are angry at the federal government, while 51% feel frustrated. Just 17% say they are basically content with the government. Anger is most palpable among conservative Republicans.

Fact Tank Sep. 27, 2013

Lessons from the last government shutdown

The 1995-1996 government shutdowns didn’t help the GOP’s image, but the party had lost support among the public well before they happened.

Fact Tank Sep. 10, 2013

Can presidential speeches change minds? The evidence suggest not

The presidency may well be a “bully pulpit,” in Theodore Roosevelt’s original sense, a position that commands attention. But as President Barack Obama prepares to address the nation Tuesday in support of taking military action against Syria, there’s little evidence (at least in recent times) that presidential speeches are very effective at moving the needle […]

Fact Tank Sep. 4, 2013

Most members of Congress have little direct military experience

Veterans make up a smaller share of Congress than at any time in the past five decades.

U.S. Politics Jul. 23, 2013

Many Say Economic Recovery Long Way Off

Four years after the recession officially ended, the economic recovery remains a long way off in the view of many Americans. And opinions of economic conditions have slipped back to levels from earlier this year.

Fact Tank Jul. 22, 2013

The public’s predictions on immigration, gun control bills this year

There’s a pretty good chance that immigration legislation will become law this year. The prospects for enacting a gun control bill are not nearly as promising, according to the American public.

Fact Tank Jul. 17, 2013

Partisan polarization, in Congress and among public, is greater than ever

While the Senate appears to have reached a deal on executive-branch appointments that heads off a showdown over filibuster rules, the fact that the confrontation went as far as it did points up the increasingly polarized state of Congress. From immigration reform to food stamps to student loans, it almost seems as if congressional Republicans and Democrats inhabit […]

Fact Tank Jun. 19, 2013

What Americans really want from their lawmakers

Americans often say they want their representatives in Congress to put the country’s needs over local concerns. But four novel experiments suggest that the public does just the opposite.  In a new study, respondents rated a member of Congress far more favorably if the lawmaker put the interests of his or her district or state […]