03/29/2007 - As the Democratic-led Congress approaches the 100-day mark, pluralities of Americans approve of the way that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are handling their leadership roles. However, the public gives Democrats mixed reviews for delivering on their campaign promises and for their policies and proposals. Slightly more disapprove of the Democrats' policies than approve (42% disapprove vs. 37% approve).
Today's Democratic congressional leaders are far less visible – but also less controversial – than former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was at a similar point early in the 104th Congress. In April 1995, Republicans were seen as keeping their promises by 59% of the public – far more than the 40% who currently say that about the Democrats. However, Americans were then evenly split in their views of the GOP's proposals.
Gingrich, in particular, was highly visible (fully 85% felt they could rate his performance by 100 days in office), but highly divisive (43% approved and 42% disapproved of his performance). By comparison, three-in-ten do not know enough about Nancy Pelosi to rate her performance. On balance, however, more than twice as many approve of Pelosi's job performance than disapprove (48%-22%).
Read the full report Democrats Fail to Impress in First 100 Days, Government Faulted on Vets' Care, Military Ratings Slip Post-Walter Reed on the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press Web site.