Saturday, January 12, 2013

Rough Start for Congressional Approval Ratings

I found an article on the political page, which discusses Congress' low approval rating to start off the year. According to the poll, Congress' current job approval rating is at only 14%. This is a four percent drop since November and December of last year.

1. The survey was conducted by Gallup.

2. It appears that the research was funded by the Gallup News Service.

3. I don't believe that the sponsor was interested in finding a particular result. I think Gallup polls are generally unbiased. In the article, the author mentioned that both Democrats and Republicans had very similar levels of disapproval for Congress. So, I don't think this article leans to the left or right. The article also included an explanation of the results. Congressional approval ratings, according to the author, are so down due to the recent fiscal cliff argument in Congress. I think the author's main motivation in this study was to simply inform the public of the congressional approval ratings and explain the results.

4. Yes, the information on the methodology is included. The survey was performed via telephone interviews (half landline, half cell phones) on Jan 7-10, 2013. The random sample was 1,011 adults aged 18 or older, living in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. The article also said the maximum margin of sampling error was + or - 4%. The article even included a link to the raw statistics of the survey.

5. Yes, the results are presented in a clear and informative manner. The article flows well and graphs are introduced when necessary.

6. Yes, the graphs were helpful to the overall quality of the article. There was a graph that showed the congressional approval rating over the past two years and a graph that showed congressional approval ratings by party identification (Democrat, Republican, Independent).

Author: Frank Newport
Title: Congress Begins 2013 with 14% Approval
Publication Title: Gallup Politics
Date: January 11, 2013
Link to Article:
Link to Raw Data:

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