• Polling

Perceptions of Republicans in Congress Are Deeply Underwater

Thursday, October 21, 2021 By Bryan Bennett
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Welcome to NAVIGATOR – a project designed to better understand the American public’s views on issues of the day and help advocates, elected officials, and other interested parties understand the language, imagery, and messaging needed to make and win key policy arguments.
Key takeaways
  • While Americans are split on how they feel Biden is doing as president, Republicans in Congress are deeply in the negative.
  • Democrats are seen as the party of the working class and people of color, while Republicans are seen as the party of the rich and corporations.
  • Those concerned about Congressional Republicans see them as focused on the wealthy and “out-of-touch,” with top descriptors focusing on them helping the rich get richer, endangering democracy, and opposing stimulus efforts.

Republicans in Congress Are Deeply Underwater on Their Job Performance While Americans Are Split on Biden

Among independents, while Republicans in Congress are 54 points in the negative, Biden is 33 points underwater.

George W. Bush Is Viewed Much More Favorably Than Donald Trump Overall

Former President Bush is viewed favorably by a majority of Americans, with numbers nearly breaking even among Democrats and above water among independents. Trump, however, is underwater overall and among independents.

  • But, Republicans are 17-points more favorable to Trump than Bush (83% to 66% respectively).

Pro-Bush, Anti-Trump Republicans Are More Male, Older, Higher-Earning, and More Likely to Be Vaccinated Than GOP

Making up 13% of Republicans overall, Republicans who are favorable to George W. Bush and unfavorable to Donald Trump are more likely to be men, older Americans, vaccinated, 2020 Biden voters, and earn more than $100,000 annually than the Republican population overall.

Republicans Are Seen As Refusing to Compromise and Blocking Democrats, Including on Debt Ceiling, Infrastructure

When asked what negative things they have recently heard about Republicans in Congress, Americans point to their refusal to work with Democrats to get things done on major issues facing the country, including the debt ceiling, infrastructure, and trying to protect Trump at all costs.

Democrats Seen as Party Of Working Class, People Of Color, While Republicans Are Party of the Rich And Corporations

Consistent with data from August of 2020, Americans see both parties representing their strongest supporters, while Republicans represent the wealthy and major corporations and Democrats, low income people and people of color.

Both Parties Seen as Beholden to Donors and Wall Street; Republicans Also to Big Oil, NRA

Wealthy campaign donors and Wall Street top both parties’ lists of influencers: this is driven in part by independents who see both parties as being too influenced by each.

“For the Wealthy,” “Out of Touch,” “Greedy,” “Corrupt” Top Descriptors for Those Concerned With GOP

Seven in ten who have concerns about Congressional Republicans say they are “for the wealthy” and “out-of-touch.”

Helping the Rich Instead of Working People and Endangering American Democracy Raise Most Doubts About Republicans

Americans Split on GOP: Democrats Are More Concerned About Misinformation, Center-Right About Protecting the Rich

More believe Republicans divide and push misinformation for political power than feel they truly believe these things.

About The Study

This release features findings from a national online survey of 1,001 registered voters conducted October 7-11, 2021. Additional interviews were conducted among 100 Hispanic voters, 100 African American voters, 100 independents without a partisan lean, and 73 Asian American and Pacific Islander voters.

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About Navigator

In a world where the news cycle is the length of a tweet, our leaders often lack the real-time public-sentiment analysis to shape the best approaches to talking about the issues that matter the most. Navigator is designed to act as a consistent, flexible, responsive tool to inform policy debates by conducting research and reliable guidance to inform allies, elected leaders, and the press. Navigator is a project led by pollsters from Global Strategy Group and GBAO along with an advisory committee, including: Andrea Purse, progressive strategist; Arkadi Gerney, The Hub Project; Joel Payne, The Hub Project; Christina Reynolds, EMILY’s List; Delvone Michael, Working Families; Felicia Wong, Roosevelt Institute; Mike Podhorzer, AFL-CIO; Jesse Ferguson, progressive strategist; Navin Nayak, Center for American Progress Action Fund; Stephanie Valencia, EquisLabs; and Melanie Newman, Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

For press inquiries contact: press@navigatorresearch.org