Would you like to know a relationship between the two times? The Democrats ran the show back then too!!. Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not.
It’s worth remembering that Congress is basically nothing more than a mechanism for the representation of the people’s wishes. We all can’t go to Washington. So we elect men and women and send them off in our stead. It’s not an optimal situation, it seems to me, when such a low percentage of average Americans have confidence in this system.Here is the disconnect and I am sure Newport would say the same thing. The confidence in Congress rating has been pretty dismal for a couple of decades. But while confidence in Congress is very low, a very high percentage of Congressman get re-elected every other year, with re-election rates of better than ninety percent and sometimes as high as ninety-eight percent. So we appear to have a familiar pattern, one I have noted regularly. Americans' don't like Congress as a body, but they still love their Congressman.
But there is another factor at play in the high re-election rates and the dismal confidence level. The electoral system is rigged in favor of the incumbent. Of course, eliminiating the incumbent advantage is all but impossible, but it can and should be minimized, through changes in campaign finance laws, changes in redistricting procedures, and changes in ballot access laws. In short, we as a nation need to look long and hard at the political class we have not only created, but allowed to perpetuate.