The good news for Republicans? A new CBS News poll shows ObamaCare just as unpopular as it was before the shutdown in a survey taken on the first day of both government rollouts. The bad news? Even those who oppose ObamaCare aren’t happy to have a government shutdown over it, and more blame is accruing to the GOP — at least so far:
On day three of the partial government shutdown, a new CBS News poll reveals that a large majority of Americans disapprove of the shutdown and more are blaming Republicans than President Obama and the Democrats for it.
Fully 72 percent of Americans disapprove of shutting down the federal government over differences on the Affordable Care Act; just 25 percent approve of this action. Republicans are divided: 48 percent approve, while 49 percent disapprove. Most tea party supporters approve of the government shutdown – 57 percent of them do. Disapproval of the shutdown is high among Democrats and independents. This CBS News poll was conducted after the partial government shutdown began on October 1.
Views of the Affordable Care Act are related to views of the shutdown. Those who like the health care law also overwhelmingly disapprove of shutting down the government. There is more support for the shutdown among Americans who don’t like the 2010 health care law. Thirty-eight percent of them approve of the shutdown but even more, 59 percent, disapprove.
The blame tilts more to Republicans than Barack Obama, but not overwhelmingly so at 44/35, respectively. Sixteen percent still can’t decide who to blame more, and yesterday’s debacle with the WWII memorial and Harry Reid can’t have improved the situation for Democrats. CBS also notes that their poll in the November 1995 shutdown put blame on Republicans by nearly a 2:1 ratio, 51/28, in relation to Bill Clinton. That’s not a good sign for Democrats, either.
So what should each side do next? The overwhelming response from all demographics is compromise. Over the whole sample, 76% want Obama and the Democrats to compromise, and 78% want House Republicans to compromise. Sixty-one percent of Democrats want to see compromise from their own side, and 59% of Republicans feel the same way.
That suggests that the “clean CR or else” and “I won’t negotiate” messaging from Reid and Obama will eventually backfire, especially as House Republicans send individual appropriations with little disagreement to the Senate only to get them rejected out of hand. That Kabuki theater last night at the White House may end up backfiring after raising expectations that Democrats were preparing to negotiate after all.
Of course, there is considerable political pressure on both sides to remain obstinate. RCP’s Scott Conroy talked with CBS News about the polling, and about the pressure from safe districts: