Sixty-five percent (65%) of Americans believe that Democrats are likely to retain their newly won control of Congress in Election 2008. Thirty-two percent (32%) consider ongoing Democratic control “very” likely. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 23% believe such an outcome is “not very” or “not at all” likely.

Democrats across the country are extremely optimistic about their party’s prospects. Fifty-two percent (52%) of those in Nancy Pelos’s party say it is “very” likely they will retain majorities in both the House and Senate. Another 31% say that outcome is “somewhat” likely.

Republicans are far less certain of what will happen two years from now. Just 14% say it is “very” likely the Democrats will retain control while just 9% say that is “not at all” likely. Two thirds of the GOP faithful fall somewhere in between with 34% seeing their party’s continuation in the minority as “somewhat” likely while another 32% say it is “not very” likely.

A plurality (41%) views most Democrats in Congress as politically moderate. Thirty-five percent (35%) say most are politically liberal. On the other side of the aisle, 49% say that most Republicans in Congress are politically conservative while 32% see them as moderate.

Those who believe Democrats will retain control tend to view Democrats in Congress as moderate and Republicans as conservative. Those who are skeptical of the Democrats’ chances tend to view Democrats in Congress as liberal and Republicans as moderate.

Most Democrats (59%) across the country view Democrats in Congress are moderate. Thirteen percent (13%) view these representatives as conservative and 14% say they are liberal. Republicans have an entirely different perspective, with 59% saying that most Democrats in Congress are politically liberal.

Most Republicans (52%) also view Republicans in Congress as politically moderate. Thirty-eight percent (38%) of GOP voters view their party’s members of Congress as politically conservative.

Prior to Election 2006, just 15% of voters rated the performance of Congress as good or excellent.

The national telephone survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports November 13-14, 2006. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

Rasmussen Reports is an electronic publishing firm specializing in the collection, publication, and distribution of public opinion polling information.

Copyright © 2006 Rasmussen Reports Inc.

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