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Two Weeks After Ethics Reform

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Gallup just released a new poll that shows that only 18% of the American public approve of Congress with 76% disapproving -- an all-time low. This poll was taken two full weeks after Congress passed the new ethics law which some have described as great victory. (We were very pleased with the online disclosure provisions but generally felt the bill didn't go broad or deep enough.) The numbers represent a significant drop in Congressional support over the past few months, down from a 35% approval rating in March.

I certainly would have thought that the new earmark disclosure requirements alone, which would allow the public to view the sponsors of congressional earmarks on the Internet, would have been something that the public would have noticed, and really liked. There were lots of other good things in the bill too, even though it didn't go nearly far enough to cleanse the Congress of even the perception of corruption. And clearly it didn't.

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Who’s More Skeptical? Gallup or the Public?

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Gallup released a new poll today on what the public thinks about ethics and lobbying "reform" that -- despite their headline -- actually reflects our bipartisan polling that showed that voters nationwide believe that too little has been done to reform lobbying and disclosure laws. We found the Gallup analysis of their own poll rather odd because it downplays their own results. Their headline: "Americans Dubious Congress Can Curb Corruption: But less than half think it's a very serious problem" doesn't actually reflect their findings.

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