WASHINGTON (AP) – Most of the Americans voting Tuesday were unhappy or even angry with the Obama administration, exit polls show. But most weren't pleased with Republican congressional leaders, either.
Just 1 in 5 voters say they trust the government to do what is right most or all of the time, even fewer than in the 1994 midterms, when Republicans seized control of the House and Senate, and the last time the exit poll asked that question.
Republicans were getting some of the blame, however. About a quarter of voters say they are dissatisfied or angry with both Obama and GOP leaders in Congress. Another 6 in 10 are unhappy with one or the other of them.
The surveys of voters leaving their polling places offered encouragement for Republicans hoping to benefit from voters' glum mood. Most think the government is doing too many things better left to businesses and individuals. They feel the nation is seriously off on the wrong track. And they think the U.S. economy is stagnating or getting worse.
They're more than twice as likely to say that life will be worse for the next generation than to say things will get better.
At the same time, on many issues, voters take positions that seem to align more with the Democratic Party.
Majorities favor a way for those who are in the country illegally to stay. They approve of Obama's military action against the Islamic State group. They think abortion ought to be legal in most cases, consider climate change a serious problem, and say the economic system favors the wealthy.
The survey of 11,522 voters nationwide was conducted for AP and the television networks by Edison Research. This includes preliminary results from interviews conducted as voters left a random sample of 281 precincts Tuesday, as well as 3,113 who voted early or absentee and were interviewed by landline or cellular telephone from Oct. 24 through Nov. 2. Results for the full sample were subject to sampling error of plus or minus 2 percentage points; it is higher for subgroups.