The government's ratings for reducing the threat of terrorism have slipped, and Americans are increasingly more concerned with safety than civil liberties. Domestically, few see an upside to health care reform, and the national mood remains grim. Yet President Obama's political standing is little affected, and his personal image remains positive.
Americans’ opinion of Congress is at a 24-year low, and as a result the party in power has lost its electoral edge. Voters split between the Democrats and GOP in a 2010 matchup, but Democrats are still favored on most issues.
More say the president and GOP leaders are not working together, as Obama's approval inches lower and the Democratic Party's favorability falls sharply. Opinion about the economy remains negative with personal financial assessments becoming more bearish.
A solid majority of Americans continue to approve of Barack Obama’s job performance, although they express mixed views of several of his policies. Only about one-in-five Americans (21%) say the U.S. is less safe from terrorism under the Obama administration than under the Bush administration
Although a majority of the members of the new, 111th Congress are Protestants, Congress -- like the nation as a whole -- is much more religiously diverse than it was 50 years ago.
While opinion of the Republican Party (39% favorable) remains at a historic low, favorable views of the Democratic Party have risen to 57%. Attitudes toward the Democratic-led Congress, however, remain very negative.
Obama has moved out to a broad-based advantage over Clinton in the national Democratic primary contest. Public attitudes about the war in Iraq have turned more positive, a favorable development for McCain.
Republican leaders share blame for Congress's lack of productivity; Democrats holds 12-point advantage over GOP as better able to manage the federal government.
All three branches of the federal government are under fire from the American public. Just 29% approve of President Bush's job performance while the proportion with a favorable view of Congress has declined 12 percentage points since January. Even favorable opinions of the U.S. Supreme Court have fallen, from 72% in January to 57% currently.
As the Democratic-led Congress approaches the 100-day mark, pluralities approve of House Speaker Pelosi's and Senate Majority Leader Reid's leadership. But Democrats get mixed reviews on campaign promises and policies and proposals.