Nine in ten Americans say their country is on the wrong track

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New York, Oct.15 : Nearly nine in ten Americans - a record high - now believe the country is on the wrong track, surpassing the high of 83 percent reached in May.

According to a CBS News/New York Times survey, just seven percent say the country is headed in the right direction.

Just 12 percent now approve of the job Congress is doing, and for the first time in 30 years, fewer than half approve the job their own representatives are doing.

President Bush's overall approval rating stands at 24 percent, close to its all-time low.

Americans disapprove of the 700 billion dollar economic bailout bill passed by Congress and signed into law by President Bush earlier this month by a nearly two-to-one margin. Just 28 percent approve of the bailout plan, down three points from last week. Fifty three percent - disapprove, while 19 percent say they don't know.

Americans have low expectations for the plan. Only about one in three believes the bill will be effective, while a slightly higher percentage - 38 percent - believe it will have no impact. Fifteen percent believe it will make things worse.

They continue to believe that the bailout plan will aid a few big investors and people on Wall Street, not the whole country. Sixty-three percent say the plan will just benefit Wall Street, up from 54 percent when the plan was first proposed about two weeks ago. Just 28 percent believe it will benefit homeowners and people across the country.

While a majority of Americans support the notion of the federal government offering to help homeowners struggling to pay their mortgages, support has waned. Early in October, six in 10 Americans approved of that idea. Support has dropped to about half now, and 38 percent disapprove. Democrats are more likely than Republicans to support the idea.

Two-thirds expect the economy to get worse, a slight improvement from last week, when three in four said as much. Just five percent believe the economy is improving.

This poll was conducted among a random sample of 1,070 adults nationwide, including 972 registered voters, interviewed by telephone October 10-13, 2008. The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample and the sample of registered voters could be plus or minus three percentage points. The error for subgroups is higher.

ANI

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