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GOP Favorability Rating The Worst Since Clinton Impeachment

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Here are some additional public polling numbers likely to comfort Democrats concerned about the 2010 elections.

A new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation Poll shows that the Republican Party's favorability rating is the lowest since the height of its efforts to impeach former President Bill Clinton.

Only 36 percent of polled voters said that they had a positive view of the Republican Party, the lowest that has been registered by CNN since December 1998 (when the party had a 31 percent favorable rating). The GOP also had a 36 percent favorable rating in June 2007 -- the waning months of the Bush administration.

The decade-long low for the GOP certainly challenges the conventional wisdom that the party stands in strong position to make major gains in the upcoming congressional elections. It also should spur a bit of reflection over the course of strategy the party has pursued with Barack Obama in the White House. Incessant sparring, it seems, has had the effect of bringing down the ratings of both parties, not simply the one in power.

The CNN poll showed that 53 percent of the public currently has a positive view of the Democratic Party -- down five percentage points since February. The GOP, meanwhile, has lost three percentage points of popularity during that same time frame and is now viewed negatively by 54 percent of the public.

When looking at Congress specifically, the numbers are a bit closer (and, by relation, more dire for Democrats. Thirty-eight percent of those polled approved of the job Democratic leaders are doing in Congress, down from the 60 percent approval rating in February. Meanwhile, 33 percent of those polled approved of the job being done by congressional Republicans, down from 44 percent in February.

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