Analysis: Independents Sour On Incumbents; Many Say Their Member Has Taken Bribes

Source Organization: Pew Research Center

03/07/2006 - The recent reports about corruption on Capitol Hill have not resonated widely with the public. But the allegations swirling around Congress may be fueling the political discontent of independents, who are unhappy with Congress in general and, in many cases, with their own representative in particular. Last month, 36% of independent voters said they don't want to see the incumbent in their district reelected. This is as high as in October 1994 (34%), shortly before the historic 1994 midterm when Democrats lost control of Congress.

Anti-incumbent sentiment is also up among Democratic voters – 31% today believe their representative should not be reelected compared with around 20% in previous midterms, including 1994 when the GOP gained control of Congress.

There is, however, no increase in anti-incumbent feelings among Republican voters, just 18% of whom say their representative should not be reelected.

Still more widespread among independents is the belief that their own member of Congress is guilty of taking bribes.

Read the full analysis Independents Sour On Incumbents; Many Say Their Member Has Taken Bribes on the Pew Research Center Web site.

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