The Hill poll: Majority blames Washington, not Wall Street, for economic crisis

posted at 2:05 pm on October 17, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

Does the Occupy Movement reflect mainstream opinion about the problems that led to the financial crisis?  According to a poll conducted by The Hill, the protests reflect a distinctly narrow political view.  The majority of likely voters blame Washington, not Wall Street, for the financial crisis and recession:

In the minds of likely voters, Washington, not Wall Street, is primarily to blame for the financial crisis and the subsequent recession.

That is the key finding of this week’s The Hill poll, which comes as the national Occupy Wall Street movement — a protest that objects to risky practices and excessive salaries at major banks, along with American income disparities in general — enters its second month.

The movement appears to have struck a chord with progressive voters, but it does not seem to represent the feelings of the wider public.

Not only doesn’t it appear to be resonating with non-progressives, the entire effort might end up blowing up in the face of the Obama administration as it seeks to co-opt the movement:

A plurality believe that the Occupy Wall Street movement will hurt Democrats and Obama in the 2012 election. Even those whose sympathies lie on the left of center seem unsure about the likely political repercussions. Just half of all liberal likely voters — the group most likely to blame Wall Street for the recession — and fewer than half of all Democrats believe the protests will help their side next year.

The crosstabs show a remarkable lack of traction for the Occupy Movement’s rhetoric even among those perhaps somewhat inclined to support it.  For instance, younger voters (39 and younger) blame Washington instead of Wall Street 57/31.  Self-professed liberals have a majority the other way, but not an impressive one at 36/55.  Those making under $20K have a plurality more angry at Washington than Wall Street, 46/39, and support for Occupy’s position in the rest of the income demographics falls below 30%.  Independents reject Occupy’s position 59/32, a big red flag if Obama expects to make political hay out of the protests.

Speaking of which, these likely voters don’t consider that a very good strategy, either.  Pluralities in most demos figure that the Occupy Movement will hurt the 2012 prospects of Obama and Democrats in general.  Exceptions are in the usual places: black voters (61/16 to help), Democrats (44/22), liberals (50/21), and the lower two income brackets, both virtual ties at 35/33 and 34/32.  Indies go 2-1 in believing it will hurt rather than help (20/42), moderates edge slightly in the same direction (29/31), and every age demo has a plurality believing it will hurt Obama and the Democrats.

And all of this comes at a time when the national media has given very little coverage to the radical and anti-Semitic nature of the protests.  If the media covered this movement the way they initially covered the Tea Party, only this time with plenty of reason to do so, no politician would seriously consider embracing this “movement.”

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I am the 0.00000033%!

NotCoach on October 17, 2011 at 2:09 PM

If the fedgov was being run in anything like a constitutional manner, Wall St could burn to the ground and it wouldn’t cause 90% of the problems that we’re having today.

Akzed on October 17, 2011 at 2:10 PM

If the media covered this movement the way they initially covered the Tea Party, only this time with plenty of reason to do so, no politician would seriously consider embracing this “movement.”

I think this is just a deflection strategy ginned up to take the heat off of Obama and to place it upon some other entity. AIG bus tours and, “my administration is the only thing standing between you and the pitchforks” type stuff merely represents demagoguery in action. Protestors on the lawn of some Bank of America guy’s home while his frightened teenager is alone inside is another example. There is plenty of blame to be spread around by these brainstems, none to be accepted.

ted c on October 17, 2011 at 2:14 PM

So pooping on police cars and getting endorsed by communists and Nazis won’t help politically?

Noted.

forest on October 17, 2011 at 2:14 PM

The MSM is doing something wrong. They’ll have to work on their Occupy-friendly propaganda.

Sir Galahad the Pure on October 17, 2011 at 2:15 PM

If the media covered this movement the way they initially covered the Tea Party, only this time with plenty of reason to do so

That’s a howler Ed. Its good to see HA branching out into comedy. The Media covering the OWS critically? Where do you come up with this stuff?

Shtetl G on October 17, 2011 at 2:15 PM

Any movement that claims to represent 99% of the population should glady embrace taking its fight to the ballot box and not to sit-ins.

WashJeff on October 17, 2011 at 2:16 PM

The first real cold front to blow through NYC should clear out the trash. I’m not sure what will happen next.

Cosmop on October 17, 2011 at 2:16 PM

Many of the commenters at The Hill are claiming this is a Right-Wing Push Poll.

Del Dolemonte on October 17, 2011 at 2:17 PM

the entire effort might end up blowing up in the face of the Obama administration as it seeks to co-opt the movement:

If they want to co-opt the “movement” they can begin with a hose and a soapy bucket of water and co-opt themselves a clean police car. Moreover, they can co-opt a girl a new Coast Guard uniform as well.

ted c on October 17, 2011 at 2:17 PM

The housing problem was caused by Washington.

Oil Can on October 17, 2011 at 2:17 PM

I think Americans reflexively react negatively to mass gatherings, from Klan rallies that doomed the Dems in the 20s, to the 60s protests that doomed the Dems in 68, to the marches against Nixon that doomed the Dems in 72, to the disarmament rallies that hurt a doomed Mondale in 84… the only exception might be the anti-war rallies against Bush which hurt the GOP in 08 (but no much in 04).

This is why I am not excited by actual Tea Party rallies. They present too large a target for the media.

The media is protecting the public from the gross excesses and the overt totalitarianism of OWS as best they can, but it only takes one nut with an Obama=Hit1er sign at Tea Party rally to distract from the point.

Not sure what the answer is, but rallies give me the willies.

mankai on October 17, 2011 at 2:17 PM

the entire effort might end up blowing up in the face of the Obama administration as it seeks to co-opt the movement

The Chinese, foolishly, throw in their support to the ’99rs’.

Obama did too.

This makes the Chinese and Obama communists.

What a divisive FOOL Obama is.

Schadenfreude on October 17, 2011 at 2:18 PM

I saw an ABC report with very sympathetic narration while they were running footage from protests. There were images of burning cars, arrests, communist signs and all kinds of angry, nasty looking people. The disconnect between what they were saying and what they were showing was surreal. They’re losing their minds.

forest on October 17, 2011 at 2:21 PM

The housing problem was caused by Washington.

Oil Can on October 17, 2011 at 2:17 PM

This is the problem with these explanations. Washington and Wall Street are places. They cannot be explicitly blamed for anything. Now, people that work in these places can be, however, the use of the geographic location for where they work merely reinforces the blame-shifting tactics that are used by both sides in attempting to demagogue, gain power, and maintain the hold on power. It’d be like me blaming my lawn problems on my street address and talking about the lawn problems like my address actually caused them–thus personifying it. It’s senseless. If someone causes a problem, own up to it. People write policies, not places.

ted c on October 17, 2011 at 2:22 PM

The first real cold front to blow through NYC should clear out the trash. I’m not sure what will happen next.

Cosmop on October 17, 2011 at 2:16 PM

By the end of this week, nighttime low temperatures in NYC will for the first time drop into the 40s. And remember, the coldest time of day is always just before the sun comes up, so those 40s temperatures will be felt around 7 AM and hang around til past 8 AM.

Del Dolemonte on October 17, 2011 at 2:22 PM

The Chinese, foolishly, throw in their support to the ’99rs’.

Schadenfreude on October 17, 2011 at 2:18 PM

Hilarious. China endorsing behavior that would get one flogged or worse in China. Reminiscient of Felipe Calderon criticizing our lax immigration policies as Drachonian when we all know what happens to those to try to cross Mexico’s Southern border illegally.

Meh on October 17, 2011 at 2:23 PM

Obama administration as it seeks to co-opt the movement:

Wait…

How can something STARTED by 0bama be co-opted by 0bama?

LegendHasIt on October 17, 2011 at 2:26 PM

The CRA, Fannie,Freddie,Progressive Caucus,CBC and all the other leftist congress critters along with Bill Clinton and Treas Sec Ruben for creating credit default swaps for the banking industry.The house of cards is squarely in Wash DC and to correct all the problems they created we were given Dodd-Frank Financial Reform and we must be thankful according to the dems.

tim c on October 17, 2011 at 2:27 PM

Over the weekend my wife and I saw two different Americas. We flew to San Francisco for the weekend to enjoy food and the symphony.

As one local put it riding the “muni” we could mingle with the unwashed masses, which we did and saw one America. We saw a few old white aging hippies on their way to Occupy San Francisco. The smelly one’s proceeded to tell me how America sucked etc.

That same night we attended the symphony and riding back to our hotel we were driven there by a man who had immigrated to America from Ethiopia. He proceeded to tell me what a wonderful country America is, how it holds endless opportunity for his wife (who also worked) and their newly born son.

It struck both my wife and I how this country is viewed by those born into a life with untold promise, yet are left unsatisfied and feeling they are owed/ entitled to everything. Compared to those seeking to come and allowed to enter saw hope, opportunity and extolled the greatness America is.

Sad and amazing..

theblacksheepwasright on October 17, 2011 at 2:29 PM

The reason the Occupy Movement doesn’t reflect mainstream opinion is because most Americans are not Socialists and Communists.

Watch this video of the Occupy Oakland protest this week to see true Marxism on display:

The socialist OWS mob invades Oakland, California.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tuFQuEwJ5xI

This column from American Thinker also provides an excellent perspective on the Marxist influence at the Occupy Oakland protest

It’s Mourning in America, friends. Wake up to the fetid smell of Marxism taking over Main Street, intent on crushing Wall Street.

http://www.americanthinker.com/2011/10/the_revolutionaries_revenge.html

The more people who see the video from Occupy Oakland so they understand who these people are, the better.

wren on October 17, 2011 at 2:29 PM

ted c on October 17, 2011 at 2:22 PM

Nitpicky. If you are the bad apple on the block your address just may be referred to when discussing your bad neighborliness. Do people really not think that they are referring to the politicians who reside in DC when saying DC is the problem? And the OWSers want to lynch the “1%”. So they know who they are talking about when they spew their ignorance. Wall Street is just a stand in for wealthy people and corporations.

NotCoach on October 17, 2011 at 2:30 PM

Independents reject Occupy’s position 59/32, a big red flag if Obama expects to make political hay out of the protests.

So much for the Independents are stupid Meme.

Dr Evil on October 17, 2011 at 2:34 PM

Ahhhhh…the missing piece of the puzzle.

Will anyone dare point out that Obozo is PRESIDENT? That Democrats controlled the Congress for 2 YEARS under him???

The bailouts? Obozo. Payments from our taxes used for bonuses? Obozo.

Those “rich” people? Donated to Obozo.

Who will have the guts to say this openly??

KMC1 on October 17, 2011 at 11:49 AM

KMC1 on October 17, 2011 at 2:35 PM

So now that China is weighing in on this in favor of the #OWS, does that mean they will be sending them some tanks? Then instead of a Kent State event we get a Tianamen Square event?

Somehow I suspect Run Over By a Cop Scooter Faker Dude will not be so anxious to become Run Over By a Tank Faker Dude. It’s too hard to get the timing right and too easy to end up as Faker Stain on Pavement Dude.

Lily on October 17, 2011 at 2:36 PM

Even those whose sympathies lie on the left of center seem unsure about the likely political repercussions.

 
But the protesters are occasionally giving their picked over, less tasty donated food to some homeless people. Are you all so heartless that you can’t see their sacrifice?!

rogerb on October 17, 2011 at 2:44 PM

Somehow I suspect Run Over By a Cop Scooter Faker Dude will not be so anxious to become Run Over By a Tank Faker Dude. It’s too hard to get the timing right and too easy to end up as Faker Stain on Pavement Dude.

Lily on October 17, 2011 at 2:36 PM

You know what would really make this occupy movement festive if Flat Fatima or Islamic Rage Boy showed up I am sure there is a way to start photo shopping them into the movement carrying well placed signs “We’re here, We’re propagandist tools, get used to it” SNARK.

Dr Evil on October 17, 2011 at 2:46 PM

Everything old is new again . . . these are the same brain impaired pigs that cluttered the streets in the 60s. They deserve nothing except the business end of a fire hose and a detention cell.

rplat on October 17, 2011 at 2:48 PM

According to a poll conducted by The Hill, the protests reflect a distinctly narrow political view.

Well, thats appropriate. A narrow political view, for narrow minded people.

UltimateBob on October 17, 2011 at 2:53 PM

Mr. Morrissey you are looking at this the wrong way. You see these protesters as a minority. You say that Obama is trying to Co-Opt the movement. No, Obama IS the movement; they are his people, his army. In addition Obama controls the government, the security apparatus, a political party, and the news media.

What this poll shows, (if it’s accurate) is that 1/3 of the people in this country are either openly Marxist, or at least sympathetic to the ideology. Obama doesn’t see them as a small minority, he sees 1/3 of the country is on his side. If only he and the other leaders of his party can get just a few more people to join in he can pull of a radical transformation of the US GOVERNMENT.

The Orange Rev…uh…’movement’ in the Ukraine is the model. The protests in the middle east were a proving ground, a training exercise for his organizers.

These Occupying protesters are out there trying, TRYING to provoke an over reaction that Obama can use to justify Federal intervention to protect his people, the 1/3 of the country sympathetic to his proposals.

This country is balanced on a ledge, Obama’s 1/3 are trying to topple our democratic system, while an equal number (more or less) on the right are trying to stop him. The remaining 1/3 in the middle are either indifferent, or unaware.

Skandia Recluse on October 17, 2011 at 2:56 PM

The only reason that Occupy Wall St. is getting attention is because people are invading a piece of land in various cities and camping out indefinitely. If these people held conventional protest rallies, which lasted for a few hours, nobody would pay any attention to them, because their complaints are off base, and their demands and proposals are totally fringe and unrealistic.

The media is not really interested in interviewing the protesters, as their comments are usually pretty embarrassing. What the media and the Democrats want people to focus on is the raw, unarticulated populist anger that is being expressed solely via camping out indefinitely. They want middle America to see angry mobs who hate the rich, with the hope that they’ll want to join these mobs.

In Lower Manhattan, where the main protest is taking place, you’ve got a far Left Congressman, Jerry Nadler, who is giving the middle finger to local residents and businesses who are being inconvenienced by the “occupation”. Nadler understands that Obama’s only hope of getting re-elected is for this mob to grow.

So he wants them to stay there from now until election day, with the hope that the size of the crowd gets bigger and bigger. If vagrants from all over flood to Lower Manhattan, and make it impossible for people in that area to live and work, that’s fine with him, and all other Democrats.

It’s not about what these people believe, or what they want. It’s about bodies in the street expressing anger at easy targets. They are clearly playing with fire.

ardenenoch on October 17, 2011 at 3:00 PM

Imagine a bunch of Tea Partiers, the Lyndon LaRouche folks, Hare Krishnas, Communists, or radical Muslims setting up in front of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the Pentagon, the Russell, Dirksen or Hart Senate Office Buildings, the Longworth, Rayburn or Cannon House Office Buildings, the SCOTUS, the Holocaust museum, the Naval Observatory, Howard Dean’s house, the Cloward–Piven home, the DNC, the White House, or Obama campaign headquarters with “Occupy” banners.

Wonder how Obama would like to be associated with that ?

J_Crater on October 17, 2011 at 3:04 PM

If the media covered this movement the way they initially covered the Tea Party, only this time with plenty of reason to do so, no politician would seriously consider embracing this “movement.”

While that might be true of most pols, OWS is a “community organizer’s” dream. Obama’s not only embracing it, but fighting off flash-backs.

Barnestormer on October 17, 2011 at 3:07 PM

0bama sez:

“equivalent of the civil rights movement”

I see it as more of an UNcivil Leftists movement.

LegendHasIt on October 17, 2011 at 3:21 PM

“Majority blames Washington, not Wall Street, for economic crisis”

There is hope for the Republic!

locomotivebreath1901 on October 17, 2011 at 4:30 PM

James Carville: Civil Unrest “Imminently Possible” Real Clear Politics. I think Ed covered this conversation Imus had with James Carville also. This was back on June 6th so I am guessing this thing was supposed to kick off with the “Day of Rage – September 17th” and they rolled out “occupy” instead.

We we’re warned folks.

Dr Evil on October 17, 2011 at 5:05 PM