WaPo/Pew sequestration poll question oddly missing an option

posted at 10:01 am on February 26, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Let’s see if you can figure out what Pew and the Washington Post left out of this poll question about blame for the sequester.  I won’t even give you a hint, even if Rovin had to tip me to this by e-mail:

wapo-pew-question

Say, where is the option for Senate Democrats? It might be a secret to the Washington Post that Democrats control one chamber of Congress, but if they dug around a little bit, they might discover that Harry Reid runs the Senate.  Of course, that hasn’t meant much in the last four years of budgeting, as Reid and his caucus have ignored the law that requires the Senate to actually produce a budget, but still, they’re at least nominally an independent player in this battle.

By the way, if the Senate had followed the law and produced normal-order budgets, we wouldn’t have the sequestration at all. The budget resolutions of both chambers would have gone to conference committee, which would have hashed out the differences.  Obama would have signed the budgets, and we would have avoided nearly four years of crisis funding for the federal government.  Reid and Obama haven’t used normal order because they want to keep using continuing resolutions as a means to keep the inflated FY2010 spending levels as the baseline going forward, and especially because they want to keep House Republicans from having a real voice on spending and budgeting.

In this case, Pew and the Washington Post didn’t just leave out an option.  They left out the real culprit, both in the acute crisis (since the Senate still hasn’t produced a sequestration alternative in this session or the previous one) and in the chronic budget failure that produced it.


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So it’s presumed that someone needs to be “blamed” for spending cuts slowing the rate of spending increases?

forest on February 26, 2013 at 10:06 AM

Of course, the libs over at the Post argued with me that “this omission” was not relevant.

Rovin on February 26, 2013 at 10:12 AM

Obama is hte awesome……….All Hail the Messiah!

dmann on February 26, 2013 at 10:13 AM

Why do they even bother trying to hide it, here’s the options they wanted to use:

- Republicans in Congress
- Republicans in general
- Both of the above
- Not Obama

mudskipper on February 26, 2013 at 10:16 AM

Omissions and other things are so common among the MSM.

Years ago, when Democrat Gary Condit was being investigated for murder, CNN ran a segment that I happened to be watching. Instead of the usual practice of displaying his name as Gary Condit(D), CNN used Gary Condit(Rep). The automatic assumption of low-info types would be he’s a Republican, and CNN could claim innocence because they meant Representative.

Of course the media won’t mention the Dem-controlled Senate being a factor. Many out there don’t want to hear it anyway, having been trained for years like Pavlov’s dogs to think the government is made up of only Obama and House Republicans.

The transition from liberty to tyranny is getting there, one MSM news report at a time.

Liam on February 26, 2013 at 10:16 AM

“Say, where is the option for Senate Democrats? It might be a secret to the Washington Post that Democrats control one chamber of Congress, but if they dug around a little bit, they might discover that Harry Reid runs the Senate.” – E.M.

Sadly, the American people are way too much self-centered, clueless, and disengaged.
I suspect that those LIVs (low information voters) might wake up as they see their paychecks dwindle, dwindle, and dwindle with ZerØ pulling the purse strings.
Of course, because most Americans are lazy, ignorant, and disengaged we’ll be seeing the demise of our culture and exceptionalism.
OUR Senate is a joke, much like Ancient Rome, that led to ITS downfall.
SPQR (Senatus Populusque Romanus)
Someone, ANYONE in the U.S. Senate should take the historical hint.
I won’t hold my breath.
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on February 26, 2013 at 10:16 AM

Of course the Repubs are to “blame”, they hold the pursestrings in Congress. If they changed the words to ” be responsible” or ” get the credit” the results would be the same.
The poll is deliberately skewed to make spending cuts a bad thing, shame on the pollsters.

srdem65 on February 26, 2013 at 10:17 AM

The pass given to the Senate Democrats since 2009 is almost as infuriating as what Obama’s gotten away with. We have poll after poll showing that Americans by and large want less spending, hate Obamacare, and believe Porkulus to be an utter failure, yet they reelected a bunch of the Senate Dems with the complete opposite point of view.

Doughboy on February 26, 2013 at 10:17 AM

The science is settled on media bias.

Sincerely,
Chuck T

hillsoftx on February 26, 2013 at 10:18 AM

The low info does not realize there is a Senate. If the press explained Liberals control 2/3 of the Government – there could be no villian. Of course, even if the press explained this – the low info would tell you Michelle won an Oscar for the best hair

drivingtheview on February 26, 2013 at 10:20 AM

TEA PARTY’S fault.
No no no, G Dubya’s.
Foxnews?
Rush’s.
I have it, the quittin’ Pope!

racquetballer on February 26, 2013 at 10:20 AM

If the Republicans didn’t have marshmellows they would cite this poll, go home, and tell the country they are leaving it to the democrats.

docflash on February 26, 2013 at 10:22 AM

It is interesting to me that they set sequestration up as if it is a bad thing to expect the government to spend like they did in 201l.
Spending at a slower rate than previously projected is not a “spending cut.”

I wonder what the response would be if the question was set up to ask who gets the credit when sequestration kicks in. Of course we only have history to go by. Clinton signed “welfare reform” into law but made it clear that Congress was holding a gun to his head to make him do it (i.e. overturn his veto). It worked and today you can’t find a single worthless Democrat that will not make the claim that Clinton was the genius behind welfare reform.

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 10:22 AM

I’ll tell you what else is missing: the apostrophe.

If an agreement…is not reached by this week’s deadline…

What, no editors at WaPo? Are things really that bad in the print journalism biz these days?

rogaineguy on February 26, 2013 at 10:25 AM

It worked and today you can’t find a single worthless Democrat that will not make the claim that Clinton was the genius behind welfare reform.

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 10:22 AM

Very true. The Dems also want it kept secret Clinton fought it tooth and nail, finally having to sign the third time a package was passed.

Some genius, some hero. /

Liam on February 26, 2013 at 10:27 AM

Why not just ask, “Should all conservatives serve a life sentence for your unhappiness, or should 30 years hard labor be an option for those who choose to give away all their money to democratic political campaigns?”

Pew Research will no longer appear on my polling radar. They should be embarrassed.

ROCnPhilly on February 26, 2013 at 10:28 AM

Law abiding gun owners are to blame.

racquetballer on February 26, 2013 at 10:32 AM

Excuse you, but Romney’s chief media strategist was quoted in Mediaite as saying that the media is not biased! Thus, there must be an alternative explanation for “Democrats in Congress” being left out of the list of choices for who is to blame. Right? :)

Outlander on February 26, 2013 at 10:33 AM

Law abiding gun owners are to blame.

racquetballer on February 26, 2013 at 10:32 AM

There ya go! If government didn’t have to spend all that money defending gun-control laws against the crazies, we wouldn’t need the sequester. /

Liam on February 26, 2013 at 10:35 AM

I hope all those folks who, right after the election, thought it would be a fine idea to give Obama his way and watch him bear consequences on every issue are paying attention. This sequestration idea was HIS. HE is the one who signed it into law. And he’s had 18 months to do something different, to offer leadership to his fellow Democrats in the Senate, to propose another plan. All that was important to him at the time was avoiding another debt ceiling debate at election time… and he got what he wanted.

This incident is just further PROOF that there’s no incentive whatsoever for Republicans to cooperate with Barack Obama in any way on any subject. He wheedles and whines until he gets what he wants, and then when it blows up in his face, he and his minions in the press will stab the GOP in the back EVERY TIME.

Ultimately, the sequestration is Obama’s fault. Senate Democrats might have pushed the cart for him, but it was the White House which came up with this plan and lobbied for it. It was Obama himself who signed it into law. Further, it’s Obama who is stirring up hysteria with the public and within the Executive Branch of government over a reduction in proposed spending that’s not even a tenth of the Porkulus bill of 2009.

It is well past the point at which Republicans need to wise up and stop playing the fox to Obama’s scorpion. They need to get out to the cameras and make their case with the public… and they need to do it with gusto, gloves off.

Murf76 on February 26, 2013 at 10:36 AM

They can do 8 million polls on this and all other
economic topics…if the people of this country are
that damn dumb they still blame Republicans for
ANY economic problems, then we, as a country, have far
greater worries….

ToddPA on February 26, 2013 at 10:37 AM

There ya go! If government didn’t have to spend all that money defending gun-control laws against the crazies, we wouldn’t need the sequester. /

Liam on February 26, 2013 at 10:35 AM

It wasn’t the spending on gun-control laws, it was the spending on gun running for the Mexican drug cartels. ;0

But this thread brings up a very interesting question…..

Where the hell is Harry Reid these days? I don’t think I’ve seen him for weeks.

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 10:38 AM

TEA PARTY’S fault.

Yes, in that the GOP would control the Senate if not for Tea Party candidates giving up easy wins in states such as Indiana.

The budget resolutions of both chambers would have gone to conference committee, which would have hashed out the differences. Obama would have signed the budgets, and we would have avoided nearly four years of crisis funding for the federal government.

No, that’s not the case at all. You still need two parties willing to compromise in order to pass a budget and as long as you have one side proclaiming ‘DO NOT COMPROMISE’, no budget will be passed.
And let’s be accurate- during Bush’s first 6 years, fed spending increased by around 40%. It makes spending under Obama look modest.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/freeexchange/2012/02/parliamentary-procedure

bayam on February 26, 2013 at 10:38 AM

The solution to all our economic woes is graphene. Obama’s on top of it already, funding it with big government money.

racquetballer on February 26, 2013 at 10:40 AM

All part of the plan, don’t we all know that by now. Jeesh.

D-fusit on February 26, 2013 at 10:42 AM

Sequestration Scare.
http://www.boortz.com/weblogs/nealz-nuze/2013/feb/25/sequestration-scare/

First … know this. Who is raising the most hell about sequestration? That would be Barack 0bama. And who came up with the idea of sequestration? Again, that would be Barack 0bama. This was HIS idea. Even some respected liberal journalists are reminding us that this is 0bama’s idea. The Republicans didn’t come up with this. Dear Ruler did. Now he’s railing against it and laying the blame at the feet of the Republicans. Go figure. But that’s 0bama’s MO.

So .. just how deep are these cuts? Well 0bama, through his control of the Executive Department, gets to direct a lot of spending. So when one of his agencies, the FAA, for instance, has to cut back on it’s spending plans, 0bama has a degree of control over where the cuts will be. 0bama, it seems, has decided that he will work to make the cuts as draconian as possible.

Obama is a scaremonger. He is more about frightening people and demonizing Republicans than he is about leadership.

Colbyjack on February 26, 2013 at 10:43 AM

Where the hell is Harry Reid these days? I don’t think I’ve seen him for weeks.

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 10:38 AM

He’s keeping a low profile, I think, because he and Pelosi are the real driving force behind this national mess. Obama is more a figurehead, I think, who runs from every issue. He goes out in perpetual campaign mode, while the real work of trashing the country is being done by Reid, Pelosi, and a cast of thousands.

They came up with Obamacare, those 2700 pages having been written and tweaked over decades. They didn’t write the bill, of course, but collected everything into one volume and presented it. Just the way they went about it is shady, with Obama being a yes-man to them; I don’t think he’s emotionally capable of being anything other than he is.

The media are his lapdogs, but I have a sickening feeling Obama belongs to Reid and Pelosi.

Liam on February 26, 2013 at 10:43 AM

I’m surprised the poll didn’t offer this choice: Buuuooooshhh

Anyway, we need not worry. Owebama told us in the debt that sequestration would not happen on his watch.

katablog.com on February 26, 2013 at 10:44 AM

Excellent catch Rovin

Crickets
-lsm

Figures

cmsinaz on February 26, 2013 at 10:46 AM

debt = debate

katablog.com on February 26, 2013 at 10:47 AM

Where the hell is Harry Reid these days? I don’t think I’ve seen him for weeks.

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 10:38 AM

-
Does the media even remember that there is a Senate? Intentional or not… Blind spot.

RalphyBoy on February 26, 2013 at 10:47 AM

Spending at a slower rate than previously projected is not a “spending cut.”
*snip*
Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 10:22 AM

One would think that Americans would be onto this canard by now.
Sadly … Nope.
Sheeple Unite!
“Cast off those chains of oppression!” The slaughterhouse awaits!
Just keep chip, chip, chipping away at those paychecks of your voters, Slappy.
HOPEFULLY, it will lead to fiscally responsible representation at all levels of gubmint.
Maybe … Some … Day.
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on February 26, 2013 at 10:57 AM

Say, where is the option for Senate Democrats?

And where is the option that challenges the premise of the poll question?

farsighted on February 26, 2013 at 11:05 AM

Can’t comment til Allah tells us if this poll is dubious or not.

Midas on February 26, 2013 at 11:08 AM

BTW, since in any such poll probably 45% of those polled voted for Obama it’s no surprise that given the option they would choose to blame “Republicans in Congress”.

The poll is little better than propaganda.

farsighted on February 26, 2013 at 11:08 AM

Two options were left out of that poll question:

1) Senate Democrats;

2) People who voted for Obama.

Steve Z on February 26, 2013 at 11:11 AM

And if you think that cutting spending is actually a good thing that some party deserves credit, not blame for, then how would you answer that question?

Apparently I had the same reaction to this poll question as srdem65 and Happy Nomad.

John E. on February 26, 2013 at 11:12 AM

One would think that Americans would be onto this canard by now.
Sadly … Nope.

Sheeple Unite!

Karl Magnus on February 26, 2013 at 10:57 AM

That would be the same people who apparently do not think taking $700 billion from future tax revenue slated for Medicare and spending it on Obamacare is a cut in Medicare spending. And the same people who don’t care if trillion plus dollar deficits go on indefinitely, and/or who think that taxing the “wealthy” more will significantly cut those deficits. And so on and so forth. Examples are endless.

They are not only sheeple. They are stupid. We have a government elected by morons.

farsighted on February 26, 2013 at 11:14 AM

Why I do not bash Boehner and the GOp too much. If you know how to overcome this media bias\BS, please become a media consultant.

WashJeff on February 26, 2013 at 11:21 AM

This is a point I’ve been trying to make. Obama passed a temporary stimulus plan in 2009. It was $800B over 3 years. Since we haven;t had a budget, this spending has continued past it’s 3 year life. We haven’t seen a drop in expenses, which would have expired by now. The GOP needs to remind the people that Obama has made the stimulus permanent and that was not the plan. It’s time to eliminate the $250B spending per year (simple division) that is associated with an expired and failed plan.

djaymick on February 26, 2013 at 11:22 AM

I posted this on the ”
Video: The road to a deal begins with … one million steps?”

The Obama administration realizes that Americans overall are going to blame republicans but Republicans seem oblivious to this fact. Obama still has the same connections he had before his last two elections that told him that his campaign strategy was working and now they are telling him, “Don’t worry about the fact that the sequester was your idea. We’ve already convinced the masses that it will be the Republicans fault. All is well according to plan.” Republicans have to learn the methods that the left is using because we fail to communicate to the public.

PLEASE SHOUT THIS ON EVERY HILL OR WE WILL CONTINUE TO LOSE IN THIS BATTLE OF IDEAS POPULISM.

I’ll add that this video is almost useless against the Obama propaganda machine. It will only preach to the choir. The general population will never hear this. Instead they will hear only the bold face lie, “It will be the republican’s fault.” And we will let them say it. As a conservative/libertarian movement we have to do do footwork and talk to people at work and on the streets. We have to let them understand how a populist propaganda network works.

shick on February 26, 2013 at 11:30 AM

And if you think that cutting spending is actually a good thing that some party deserves credit, not blame for, then how would you answer that question?

Apparently I had the same reaction to this poll question as srdem65 and Happy Nomad.

John E. on February 26, 2013 at 11:31 AM

The ultra-scientific hillbillyjim poll consists of one question:

Who is more derelict in their duties?

A) Senate Democrats

B) The Mainstream Media

C) Jugeared Jesus

D) All of the above

Here’s a helpful hint: pick D.

hillbillyjim on February 26, 2013 at 11:33 AM

I’ve got another option that should be part of the poll choices. To wit:

“No one should be ‘blamed,’ because the sequestration cuts should be allowed to happen for the good of the country.’

That would be my pick.

Shump on February 26, 2013 at 11:40 AM

The media are his lapdogs, but I have a sickening feeling Obama belongs to Reid and Pelosi.

Liam on February 26, 2013 at 10:43 AM

He’s definitely being run by somebody he just isn’t smart enough to be doing all of this on his own as a “leader.” But I think it more likely to be outside of Congress via Valerie Jarrett and the other committed socialists of his inner circle. In short, they’ll put him on a plane to go do campaign stops for a given issue but the real negotiations are done by others.

But Reid’s disappearance is interesting. It means that the Senate essentially has no position other than to let sequestration happen. The one pathetic plan that was floated by a group of Senators was unserious grandstanding.

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 11:47 AM

I doubt the senate democrats were left out accidentally.

sadatoni on February 26, 2013 at 11:47 AM

This is all good and well for us like-minded folks. We’ll get all wee-wee’d up and have a hissy fit about the blatant bias….but the facts are that the poll still shows a plurality will blame republicans. I don’t agree, of course, but many do, it seems. The question is not whether the poll is skewed (it is). The question is what can we do about it? I have no great answers – but until we do, we’ll keep losing elections to these no-information voters.

Huckabye-Romney on February 26, 2013 at 12:00 PM

The question is what can we do about it? I have no great answers – but until we do, we’ll keep losing elections to these no-information voters.

Huckabye-Romney on February 26, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Step 1: Stop being Democrat-lite. Recognize that the Democrats are not another political party, they are the enemy. They want to destroy this nation. Recognize there is no such thing as a proud American Democrat because you can’t be all three.

Step 2: Pick the top three or four issues and craft a consistent message about what the GOP stands for (or against). The left has done a very good job of getting the GOP to chase meaningless squirrels and/or divide the social conservatives from the fiscal conservatives.

Step 3: Don’t let the left define the terms. The HHS mandate wasn’t a war on women it was a war on religious freedom and the GOP should have reacted to it as such. John Boehner lost any fight on tax hikes when he stopped calling it a penalty on the successful and started using the rat-eared wonder’s description of “tax on the rich people making $250K.”

Step 4: Stop going on Sunday morning talk shows where liberals and ex-Clinton propagandists skew the facts, misrepresent the truth, and ask biased questions. Nobody watches these shows other than as sound bites. Stay in control of your message. Pick your venues including local talk radio, speeches, and remarks to the media.

Step 5: Repeat steps 1-4 as necessary.

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 12:13 PM

This is all good and well for us like-minded folks. We’ll get all wee-wee’d up and have a hissy fit about the blatant bias….but the facts are that the poll still shows a plurality will blame republicans. I don’t agree, of course, but many do, it seems. The question is not whether the poll is skewed (it is). The question is what can we do about it? I have no great answers – but until we do, we’ll keep losing elections to these no-information voters.

Huckabye-Romney on February 26, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Spot on. The majority of us conservatives/libertarians fail to grasp that concept. Our message isn’t getting out while the opposition’s is. We need to change the way we are doing things if we are to ever make progress.

“take their game and shove it right back in their face” – Herb Brooks

shick on February 26, 2013 at 12:14 PM

Normal order budget or bust.

besser tot als rot on February 26, 2013 at 12:30 PM

Happy Nomad on February 26, 2013 at 12:13 PM

Hear hear! Especially #2. Refuse to play their childish little games and stick to our strengths. Example: My views on gay marriage? I know marriage is a religious construct better left to each citizen’s own religious beliefs. As a believer in religious freedom and individual liberty, it really isn’t under my purview to say what another person should do provided it does not infringe on my rights. Now let’s talk about reckless spending and our faltering economy and why limited government intervention in this and every other area of our lives is better for America.

Huckabye-Romney on February 26, 2013 at 12:51 PM

This is a point I’ve been trying to make. Obama passed a temporary stimulus plan in 2009. It was $800B over 3 years. Since we haven;t had a budget, this spending has continued past it’s 3 year life. We haven’t seen a drop in expenses, which would have expired by now. The GOP needs to remind the people that Obama has made the stimulus permanent and that was not the plan. It’s time to eliminate the $250B spending per year (simple division) that is associated with an expired and failed plan.
djaymick on February 26, 2013 at 11:22 AM

You are right in theory with a correction on your numbers. Of the total cost of the $831 plan, $288 billion were tax incentives. So the actual spending is $549 billion and of that $357billion going into fed spending.

Tax cuts, while effecting the deficit, are not government spending.

can_con on February 26, 2013 at 12:59 PM

1) Article 1 Section 2 – The House
2) Article 1 Section 3 – The Senate
3) Article 2 Section 1 – The President

I think it’s fair to give the majority of the credit and/or blame to the party which held a majority (2+ out of 3) of those three when budgets and spending bills were passed.

Looking back, Republicans took majority control of the House and Senate on January 3, 1995. The first budget they passed was for Fiscal Year 1996.

The Republican majority passed a total of 12 budgets, for FY 1996-FY 2007.

Over those 12 Fiscal Years, the Total National Debt increased
from $4,973,982,900,709.39
to $9,007,653,372,262.48
… an increase of $4,033,670,471,553.09 over 12 years, or approximately $28 Billion per month.

After Democrats took majority control of the House and Senate on January 3, 2007, the first budget they passed was for Fiscal Year 2008. Since the start of FY 2008 on October 1, 2007, the Democrat majorities have increased the Total National Debt
from $9,007,653,372,262.48
to $16,609,040,800,845.56 on 02/22/2013… an increase of $7,601,387,428,583.08 over less than 5 years and 5 months, or approximately $117 Billion per month.

Repeating for emphasis…

==============================
==============================

For 12 straight years, Republicans increased the Total National Debt by an average of $28 Billion per month.

And for the last 5 years and 5 months, Democrats have increased the Total National Debt by an average of $117 Billion per month… OVER FOUR TIMES the rate of Deficit spending!

==============================
==============================

ITguy on February 26, 2013 at 1:29 PM

That one was obvious. To my mind there is another one, the assumption that there is blame. Sequestration is much better than most alternatives. It is time for Replublicans to cease allowing the Democrates to role them.

burt on February 26, 2013 at 2:28 PM

stupid Americans think the GOP runs both houses, hell, the WaPo might even believe that too

burserker on February 26, 2013 at 5:51 PM

WaPo/Pew sequestration poll question oddly missing an option

…this ought to make gummeandpokeme WhackOff his Pew Pew!

KOOLAID2 on February 26, 2013 at 8:59 PM