By 47%-36%, those polled say the country would be better off if Democrats controlled Congress. That's the best showing for Democrats since the GOP won control of both houses of Congress in 1994.
Bush's overall approval rating was 46%, down 4 percentage points since early May but higher than the 45% low in March. On specific issues, 40% approved of his handling of Iraq and the economy, 33% of his handling of Social Security.
Only on handling terrorism did Bush receive a net positive rating: 55% approve, 40% disapprove.
There are red flags for Bush on two standard measures of a president's political health. The proportion that says he has "the personality and leadership qualities a president should have" fell to a new low of 52%. A record 57% say they disagree with him on the issues that matter the most to them.
On the filibuster confrontation--defused by a compromise announced late Monday--those surveyed favored the Democrats by 48%-40%. But they saw merit in the arguments of each side. A 53% majority say the filibuster-- the ability of at least 41 senators to continue debate and delay a vote--should be preserved. Still, 69% wanted the Senate to hold up-or-down votes on judicial nominees.