April 6, 2012

Only 15% of likely voters think the Supreme Court puts "too many limits on what the federal government can do."

Rasmussen reports.

30% think the Court doesn't put enough limits on the federal government. 40% thinks the Court gets it just right — which I presume is partly because people tend to trust the Court's authority on legal issues and partly because the Court is actually pretty good at providing just about the right degree of countermajoritarian balance.

That 40% — those who think the Court is getting it right — is about the same among Republicans, Democrats, and unaffiliated groups. But what about the rest of the Republicans, Democrats, and unaffiliated groups? Are they saying too much or not enough? Interestingly, the Republicans and unaffiliated voters are saying not enough.  The Democrats are divided into too much and not enough. All of that shows, I think that attacking the Court as "activist" isn't a very useful political move.
Thirty-nine percent (39%) of all voters trust the Supreme Court more than the other two major branches of the federal government – the presidency and Congress. Thirty percent (30%) trust the president more, while only 12% put more faith in the Congress. Nineteen percent (19%) are not sure. Those figures reflect only modest changes since May 2009.... 
Most Republicans (70%) and voters not affiliated with either of the major parties (54%) have a favorable regard for the high court. Democrats by a 50% to 42% margin do not.

But then 60% of Democrats trust the president more than the other two branches of the government. Fifty-five percent (55%) of GOP voters express more confidence in the Supreme Court, a view shared by just 19% of those in the president’s party. Among unaffiliateds, 40% trust the court more, while 27% have more confidence in the president.
Interesting how the "unaffiliateds" seem more in sync with Republicans than with Democrats.  This suggests it is not wise for Democrats to continue to denigrate the Court.

17 comments:

chickenlittle said...

I thought "denigrate" was verboten.

shiloh said...

90% of Americans haven't got a clue what the Supreme Court does.

90% of the game is half mental. ~ Yogi Berra

Scott M said...

I thought "denigrate" was verboten.

Naw, you're thinking "decimate" and that's only verboten because of the general lack of active Legions left to carry it out.

John Stodder said...

Unfortunately, this is a Rasmussen poll, so liberals automatically discount it. This is also the kind of poll I don't think NBC or ABC would do, fearing a similar result would give Republicans a talking point. These days, trying to discuss a Rasmussen poll outside the conservative cocoon is like trying to breed a mule.

edutcher said...

The fact the Uns go with the Republicans is bad news for the Demos.

Although...

Considering how the Demos love to "rule" through SCOTUS, they can't be too happy with Dictator Zero, either, as he's poisoning the well for them in future.

PS Bathtub swabbie describes himself.

Hagar said...


A Virginia elementary school teacher told her students that “Republicans are stupid” and “they don’t care about anyone but wealthy people and businesses.”


This is 1920's-30's rhetoric that the teacher got from her parents and grandparents (and somewhat justified by the party platforms and official rhetoric back then, though, remember, the Bull Moosers and the Prairie Populists were Republicans). So, this is something like tribal traditions and cant. The actual attitudes of people have not changed that much, so if more people wake up to what is actually happening today and that the present leadership of the Democratic Party does not represent their actual views, they might well begin to punch different buttons in the privacy of the voting booth.

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

The Democrats apparently wish for a Great Leader who will lead them (and the rest of us, kicking and screaming) into a political land of plenty (for them, at taxpayers expense), who will be so Great as to rise far above the unworthy strictures of the US Constitution. FDR got the ball rolling, and they've been wishing for his resurrection ever since.

TosaGuy said...

I have full faith and confidence in Obama's ability to demogogue the court to the point that most Democrats will rate it lower than Garage's opinion of Scott Walker.

Michael K said...

"Unfortunately, this is a Rasmussen poll, so liberals automatically discount it."

That's a feature, not a bug. He interviews likely voters and tends to be more accurate inn predicting results, That's like Democrats refusing to watch Fox News although the legacy networks are distrusted more every year.

tim maguire said...

I trust the Courts the most of the 3 branches (odd--the least democratic branch has the best record of responsible decision-making), but that's not saying much.

I think the Court is far too deferential to the other branches on constitutional questions.

The mere fact that the ass from which "Rational Relationship" was pulled belonged to a respected jurist does not make it smell any sweeter.

The mere fact that the court is reluctant to notice that there is a 9th Amendment does not mean it does not exist.

Stare Decisis has it's uses, but keeping alive bad decisions shouldn't be one of them.

And so on.

KLDAVIS said...

Stuck in an area where the only thing on the radio that isn't country music is NPR, so ended up listing to some inane chatter about the SCOTUS's 'strip search' decision last night. None of the liberal commentators stopped to think that maybe the way to prevent people who've committed minor infractions from having to be strip searched was to not arrest and jail people who are suspected of committing minor infractions. Really quite stunning how tunnel vision works.

Alex said...

90% of Americans haven't got a clue what the Supreme Court does.

Yet according to you 90% of the people are qualified to vote.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I wonder how the results would have differed if they asked about limits the Supreme Courts puts on state governments. Democrats seem to like those limits better, Republicans not so much.

Paul said...

The democrats aren't likely to do the wise thing, even in a cynical political context, because they don't have an objective media to act as an accurate feedback mechanism.

They tell each other pretty lies and are always gobsmacked when reality intrudes into their puerile fantasy world where narrative supersedes truth.

They say the post-modernist contradicts every one of his cherished premises the moment he steps aboard an airplane.

EDH said...

Interesting how the "unaffiliateds" seem more in sync with Republicans than with Democrats. This suggests it is not wise for Democrats to continue to denigrate the Court.

That's because "unaffiliateds" and "independents" are largely private or cowed conservatives.

Alex said...

I know Ann doesn't believe in banning trolls, she insists that it's good to keep them around to sharpen our skills. But if all shiloh does it show up and repeat the same boilerplate insult, that's nothing but spamming the blog. At least garage tries to type different things.

Blue@9 said...

I think at minimum the court gets some level of respect and trust because they're not angling for the next election or some cushy job after office.

A Virginia elementary school teacher told her students that “Republicans are stupid” and “they don’t care about anyone but wealthy people and businesses.”

True story:

When I was in kindergarten I piped up one day: "It's President Ronald Reagan's birthday!" (I was very proud because I could read the paper.)

Teacher's face twisted into an angry knot as she declared, "I don't like Ronald Reagan."

My heart sank. But luckily my best friend leaned in and said, just loud enough for everyone to hear, "I bet he doesn't like her either!" The whole class laughed. She didn't. But it was all good.