BY BEN GOAD
WASHINGTON BUREAU
bgoad@pe.com

Published: 12 July 2012 07:20 AM

Three out of four Californian’s agree: Congress is doing a bad job, a new survey shows.

Just 17 percent of the state’s voters approve of the work it’s doing in Washington, while 74 percent disapprove and 9 percent have no opinion, according to a Field Poll conducted for The Press-Enterprise and other California media subscribers.

The poll, released Thursday, July 12, underscores voters’ long-held frustration with Congress, which has been saddled with fierce partisanship and legislative gridlock in recent years.

“There doesn’t seem to be any agreement on the major issues of the day,” Field Poll director Mark DiCamillo said. “It’s kind of a do-nothing Congress, at least on major issues, and I think voters are a little tired of that.”

The partisan bickering was on full display Wednesday, July 11, in the House, where lawmakers debated for hours before voting to repeal — for the 31st time — President Barack Obama’s signature health care reform law. The measure passed 244 to 185, with just five Democrats defecting to vote for it and zero Republicans breaking ranks to oppose it.

The repeal legislation is considered dead on arrival in the Democratic-controlled Senate, and Obama has vowed to repeal any such measure that lands on his desk. But that’s unlikely to stop the two sides from continuing to debate the issue.

“If it’s a political issue that will affect the elections at the congressional level or at the national level, you can bet that they’ll continue pursuing it,” DiCamillo said.

The level of discourse in Congress is one reason Bruce Reynolds, of Rancho Cucamonga, was among the majority of poll respondents who disapprove of the federal lawmakers.

“They don’t seem to communicate, and it’s all in-fighting when they do,” said Reynolds, 65. “They haven’t accomplished anything.”

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