Washington Public approval for President Bush and Congress has hit new lows in The Associated Press-Ipsos poll.
With the Iraq war dragging on and recession fears mounting, only 31 percent of those surveyed said they approve of the job Bush is doing, according to the poll released Thursday.
His lowest previous approval in the survey was 32 percent - a virtual tie with the new reading - and that rating was recorded several times, most recently in June.
Only 69 percent of Republicans voiced approval of Bush, about the same as in recent months but still an anemic showing for a president within his own party. Only 29 percent from the GOP said they strongly approve of the job he is doing.
Just 7 percent of Democrats and 19 percent of independents gave positive marks to Bush's work.
Congress' performance was approved by just 22 percent, continuing a steady decline since Democrats took over in January. With lawmakers unable to force Bush to pull large numbers of troops from Iraq, just one-quarter of Democrats gave a thumbs-up to Congress' work, about where they have been for months, compared with one-fifth of Republicans and independents.
Congress' lowest approval reading in the poll had been 24 percent, most recently in July. Its popularity often lags behind the president's because of public distaste toward the institution itself, and people often have far more positive feelings about their own representatives and senators.
The poll highlighted public discontent with Bush on issues across the board as well as a dour public mood that could signal an uphill fight for the GOP in next year's elections.
A record low 34 percent approved of Bush's handling of the economy, battered by a major credit crunch and a feeble housing market. His prior low in that area was 37 percent.