According to Rasmussen Reports, most of us don’t have high expectations for the new Congress. In a recent survey of likely voters, only 33% think it’s at least somewhat likely Congress will make significant spending cuts, compared to 60% who think it’s unlikely we’ll see significant reductions in government spending. Also from Rasmussen, 41% think that the 99-week unemployment benefit period up for renewal now is too long, and 49% think that it encourages people to stay unemployed.
A Wall Street Journal/ NBC News poll taken late last month shows that we’re skeptical of deficit reduction plans proposed by the Presidential Commission, and that Congress has a tough row to hoe in this regard. Only 41% of those surveyed are comfortable or somewhat comfortable with gradually raising the retirement age to 69; only slightly over a quarter of us are comfortable with cuts to Medicare and Social Security, and about 60% are uncomfortable with other initiatives such as reducing the mortgage interest deduction, raising gas taxes and changing corporate tax rules.
Over at CBS, a new poll shows that 69% of us believe gays and lesbians should be able to serve openly; John McCain is not one of them. Regarding the WikiLeaks and the released confidential documents, about 75% of us have heard about the debacle, and about 60% overall -- Republicans (74%), Democrats (52%) and independents (59%) -- believe the leaks will have a negative impact on us. Not surprisingly, only 25% of folks surveyed believe that the public has a right to know everything, and also not surprisingly, Dems (30%) outnumber Reps (18%) on this question.
It’s going to be an interesting season when the new Congress takes their seats.