The post-election poll by NBC/Wall Street Journal demonstrated such disdain by the voters toward both political parties -- and the crowded field of potential 2016 presidential candidates -- that one pollster exclaimed, "it's almost like the election never happened."
The poll, released last week, produced several numbers that were largely overlooked but rather striking in the degree of pessimism among the electorate just days after they handed the Republicans a big victory.
As NBC News reported: "The recently concluded midterms cost billions of dollars, generated thousands of different headlines and resulted in Republicans winning control of the U.S. Senate. But they didn't change much else -- especially the public's attitudes about politics in Washington."
Here are some highlights:
- More than three-quarters of Americans say the election won't substantially change the nation's direction;
- More say they have less confidence that elected leaders in Washington will start working together to solve problems;
- And Americans are split almost evenly between positive (41%) and negative (39%) reactions to Republicans controlling both the House and Senate next year.
"While this wave election has changed the composition of Congress and added Republican governors, it has not changed the nation's psyche or their expectations," said NBC/WSJ co-pollster Fred Yang. About two-thirds of Americans continue to say that the nation is on the wrong track, President Obama's approval rating remains in the 40s, and a majority still thinks the nation's economic and political systems are stacked against them.
As for the presidential field, many of the wannabes are barely known by the electorate and those voters who have an opinion are, for the most part, not impressed with any of them.
NBC News concludes, "For all the preparation and jockeying for the 2016 presidential campaign that's taken place more than a year before the nomination process formally begins, most of the top White House contenders aren't enjoying high ratings among the American public. Even the most positively-viewed potential candidates get nearly as much opposition as support.
Here are the favorable/unfavorable ratings for each candidate and the margin between the positive and negative views:
· Ben Carson 17%-7% (+10)
· Elizabeth Warren 23%-17% (+6)
· Hillary Clinton 43%-40% (+3)
· Rand Paul 26%-23% (+3)
· Marco Rubio 21%-19% (+2)
· Mike Huckabee 25%-24% (+1)
· Scott Walker 15%-14% (+1)
· John Kasich 11%-10% (+1)
· Chris Christie 29%-29% (even)
· Joe Biden 35%-38% (-3)
· Jeb Bush 26%-33% (-7)
· Rick Perry 20%-29% (-9)
· Ted Cruz 16%-26% (-10)